Breeder/owner Dreabon Copeland, a former Central Kentucky farm owner, died Feb. 25 in Houston. Copeland, 84, had experienced heart problems.
Copeland raced such homebred stakes winners as Angel Trumpet, Lakeside Cup, Saucy Mae, and Wilcrest, plus non-homebred Im Out First, who won four added-money races. Copeland's numerous stakes winners as a breeder also included graded winners King's Blade and Mighty McGee, plus Japanese graded winner Grab Your Heart.
In his birth state of Texas, Copeland became a successful developer, home builder, and founder of a large building materials company. To relax, he often retreated to his horse farm near Nicholasville, Ky.
"When I take care of my horses, my blood pressure stays down and my blood sugar stays down," he told The Blood-Horse. "When I get involved in my other businesses, I get all hyper." Copeland sold the farm in the 1990s and opened one near Versailles, Ky. He later sold it as well.
"He still had horses in Texas at the time of his death and was ready to send a couple to (trainer) Bernie Flint here in Kentucky," said John Muth Jr., Copeland's former farm manager.
Copeland named many of his horses after family members. Stakes winners Saucy Mae and Saucy Maisie were named after his wife, Maisie, and added-money winner Kelly Amber is named after a granddaughter. The Copelands were married 63 years.
A Navy veteran during World War II, Copeland is survived by Maisie; daughters Pamela, Sherry, Becky, and Rhonda; son Jeff; and numerous grandchildren and great-greatchildren.