The Industry Mourns the Loss of Peter J Cofrancesco III
Funeral services are pending for AQHA Past President Peter J. Cofrancesco III, who died August 1.
Peter, 45, was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in March. A case displaying his memorabilia was unveiled July 26 at the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame & Museum in Amarillo.
Peter said his emergence as a leading force in American Quarter Horse history came easily enough, as he was constantly surrounded by a home that told the story of his parents’ dedication to the breed and passed on to their children a passionate heart for the beauty of the Quarter Horse.
A sense of giving back took Peter to the role of American Junior Quarter Horse Association president – now called AQHYA – and a young Peter set his sights on becoming AQHA president, knowing that the path to leadership was through service.
“Peter was basically the captain of ship in a perfect storm of growth in the AQHA youth program,” said Julie Bryant, who was youth director for AQHA during Peter’s term, and was tasked with reaching out to 4-H, FFA and high school rodeo competitors. “Peter was the perfect ambassador.
“Peter just had this ability to draw people in,” she continued. “Always smiling, always hugging, always talking up the thing he was so passionate about – the American Quarter Horse. Not any other breed. Not by a long shot. Just the Quarter Horse. No matter where we went, Peter ended up becoming best buddies with high school rodeo kids, FFA officers, 4-H kids. And, because of him, a lot of those kids joined the youth program and worked to become state qualifiers for the Youth World Show. But it didn’t matter if it was a teenager or an adult, Peter had the same effect on everybody.”
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