Retired trainer Wilmont D. “Bill” Haun died Jan. 22 in Mount Airy, Md., from a prolonged illness. Haun, 87, was preceded in death by his wife, Patricia, six days earlier.
Bill Haun began his career in racing during the 1930s working for future Hall of Fame trainer Ben A. Jones at Woolford Farm in Kansas. Woolford was the home of Lawrin, the only Kansas-bred to win the Kentucky Derby (in 1938), and Jones’ first Derby winner. Following his discharge from the Army in 1945, Haun trained a small stable of horses for his wife.
In the early 1960s, on behalf of Edgar Lucas’ Helmore Farm, Haun purchased the first of many horses that he trained for Helmore. They included stakes winner Phantom Shot and stakes-placed Best Course.
Haun, who spent 50 years training horses, also worked in the admissions department at Bowie, Laurel, and Pimlico while his wife worked in the pari-mutuel department.
The Hauns’ survivors include a daughter, Patricia, practice manager for the Maryland Veterinary Group, which provides treatment to racehorses, and her husband, Clayton Beck, assistant racing secretary at Laurel and Pimlico.