Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Luke Kruytbosch

Today is a very sad day in the world of horse racing. One year ago today, Churchill Downs and Turf Paradise track announcer Luke Kruytbosch suddenly passed away at the age of 47. Both tracks, of course, held very touching and warm ceremonies honoring the fallen race caller, but Luke's impact was far greater to those he knew than any ceremony could portray. I was part of the Turf Paradise ceremony and eulogizing this close friend of mine it was certainly one of the most difficult things I have had to do.

Luke Kruytbosch will always be a large part of the reason why I am part of the world of horse racing. He is the one who encouraged me to be a race caller myself when I was trying to get my feet off the ground in the business. He alerted me to job opportunities that popped up and would even let me call an occasional race at Turf Paradise to help me build up a demonstration tape. Believe me, I am forever indebted to Luke Kruytbosch for all that he did for me.

I still miss Luke just about everyday. Even after I had been a race caller for many years, I would still check with him about how things were going in the industry or look to him for intelligent advice about my career path and he never disappointed. I would call him usually once a month during the season at Turf Paradise and we always ended the conversation laughing and joking. All I can do now is look back on those phone calls and discussions fondly. It is still very hard to believe that it has already been a year since Luke was taken from us.

For right now, I am Gone... GOODBYE!

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