Skip to content

Memory Lane Farm Mourns Loss Of Gaitway’s Once In A Blue Moon

by Bob Funkhouser

All too often the unexplainable occurs to “the good ones.” With five lifetime classes and five wins to her credit, the current World’s Champion Junior Five-Gaited Mare, Gaitway’s Once In A Blue Moon had to be put down April 12 due to complications from what is now a relatively routine surgery. The daughter of Northern Blues and Prowler’s Pagan Princess was having a bone chip removed.

“It’s a sad day around here,” said her trainer Jenny Taylor. “Why does it always happen to the nice ones?”

Not only was she a grand young mare, she also had a good story behind her. Gaitway’s Once In A Blue Moon was owned by noted Morgan trainer and good friend to Jim and Jenny Taylor, Luman Wadhams. It was great to see a raw prospect develop into a world’s champion for a couple of trainers from different breeds. Wadhams got enjoyment with a rub rag in his hand on the rail watching Taylor and the mare fly down the straightaways.

They began their career with a win in the 2003 UPHA Three-Year-Old Five-Gaited Classic at Dayton. That was followed by a decisive victory in the prestigious UPHA Three-Year-Old Five-Gaited Classic Grand Championship at the American Royal.

Over the winter Gaitway’s Once In A Blue Moon matured and continued to develop as the Taylor/Wadhams team had hoped she would. She debuted at the Cleveland Classic in 2004, winning the Junior Five-Gaited Class. On to the Red Mile and the Junior Five-Gaited Mare Stake was theirs as well.

Four classes and four blues to this point. As it turns out her next class would be her last. It was the young mare’s first trip to Freedom Hall and she again turned on the speed and athleticism that had the crowds going in her previous performances. She was crowned the World’s Champion Junior Five-Gaited Mare.

An illness prevented the mare from going to Kansas City to close out the year, thus bringing her promising career to an all too soon close. Her charismatic performances will never be seen again.

More Stories

  • A Memorable First Trip To Oklahoma

    Taylor Ladd arrived in Oklahoma to compete for the first time this year, but she had the success of a seasoned veteran. The walk-trot rider left the fairgrounds with two World Championships, one Reserve World Championship, and three Grand National titles under the direction of Taylor River Farm. Read More
  • Highlights from Morgan Grand National

    Enjoy the victory passes and interviews from Oklahoma City on ReporTV! Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN FINAL

    It's official! The REPORT Leaderboard for the 2017 Morgan Grand National and World Championship Horse Show is final. Wow!  All the hard work all year really paid off! Congratulations to all the winners - blue ribbon and otherwise!


    Read More
  • Interview at Sterling Training Center

    In the interview that follows, trainer Katie Mair and owners Mary and Natalie Golota share their thoughts following Katie's win with As Predicted GCH at the Morgan Grand National.  Read More
  • Interview at Cater Stables

    In the interview that follows, trainer Kristen Cater and proud owner Lila Tater share their thoughts following Kristen's victory in Hunter Pleasure with Epona's Mo'O Lio GCH at Morgan Grand National.  Read More
  • Interview at Fire Stables Equestrian

    In the interview that follows, Elaine Galatz, Hannah McBain, Phil Fountain and Julianne Rafferty of Fire Stables Equestrian share their thoughts following a successful Morgan Grand National. Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN Thru Friday

    With only Saturday's finale performances to go, here's how the blue ribbon counts go in the REPORT Leaderboard through end of day Friday, October 13. Read More
  • A Family Bond

    The Youth of the Year contest tests the skills of young equestrian each year at the Morgan Grand National. Selina Cloutier had the honor of winning this prestigious competition in 1998, and this year, her daughter Clea is competing for the same title. Read More
  • Another Record Breaking Performance

    Morgan Grand National fans were treated to a history making performance on Thursday afternoon as Arcadia, Oklahoma resident Chloe Farischon became the first junior exhibitor to win the World Champion Four-Year-Old English Pleasure title. Read More
  • REPORT Leaderboard MGN Thru Thursday

    It's coming down to the wire and the competition is so close. Check out the REPORT Leaderboard standings as of Thursday, October 12. Read More