T. Gail Morrow
June 9, 2009
NEW CUMBERLAND - T. Gail Morrow, 71, of New Cumberland, passed away, Saturday, June 6, 2009, at Trinity West in Steubenville.
She was born June 22, 1937, in Phoenix, Ariz., a daughter of the late Tony Barrett and Nadine (Johnson) Barnett Downing. She is also preceded in death by her step-father, Donovan D. Downing, and her aunt, Nina O. Lansing.
Gail was a thoroughbred horse trainer and owner. She raced at numerous race tracks in California, Arizona, New Mexico and Mexico before re-locating to West Virginia. Because of year-round racing at Waterford Park/Mountaineer, this area became her permanent home. She then raced in Michigan, Ohio, Kentucky, Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania on a "race-n-go basis" and also raced three seasons at The Fairgrounds Race Track in New Orleans, La.
From 1985 though 1991, she co-owned and operated Horsey Stuff Gift Shop in the grandstand at Waterford Park. She also originated, produced and occasionally emceed the popular and successful Saturday morning Railbirds Club as a joint venture with management.
Gail served three terms on the Mountaineer HBPA Board of Directors and was first Vice President for five years. She was chair of the Finance, Grievance and Scholarship Committees; was named to the National HBPA Education Committee after coordinating and presenting Groom Elite 101 classes at Mountaineer in 2003.
In 2004 she presented Groom Elite 201, certifying 15 students of the 25 which had graduated from the Groom Elite 101 class. In 2005 she persevered until they acquired and put in place the popular video replay terminal at Mountaineer. She also assisted in creating the Benevolent Trust and has been on the Trust's Board of Trustees since its inception.
Surviving are her sister, Nada Sue Moyer of Tucson, Ariz.; nephews, Robert Lee (Amy) Howell of Scotsdale, Ariz., Vernon Gail Howell of Phoenix, Ariz.; cousins, Mary Pat Lansing, St. David, Ariz., Ramah Rains Shaw and her husband Johnnie of Fort Mohave, Ariz., Dr. Paul Lansing of Camp Verde, Ariz., and Dr. Pearl Lansing of Camp Verde, Ariz.
A celebration of Gail's life will be held at noon on Monday, June 22, 2009, at Mountaineer Race Track at the race track turn with Chaplain Jim Smith officiating.
In lieu of flowers memorial contributions may be made to Friends of Barn Cats c/o HBPA, P.O. Box 486 Newell, W.Va., 26050.
Turley Funeral Home handled the arrangements.