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Remembering Clark Parker

AQHA remembers longtime judge and steward Clark Parker who passed December 27 at age 81.

Clark Ralph Parker, a true legend in the horse world, passed away peacefully on Wednesday, December 27, 2023, in Logan, Utah, at age 81. Born December 12, 1942, in Granite, Utah, to Tex and Faye Parker, Clark’s journey through life was a remarkable testament to his enduring love for horses, his dedication to his family and his unwavering commitment to the American Quarter Horse Association.

From his early years, Clark’s heart belonged to the world of horses and rodeo. He spent his childhood alongside his six brothers and sisters, learning the values of hard work, unity and the importance of family.

Clark was married to Angelee “Annie” Yates in 1969 and eventually settled down in Paradise, Utah, where they raised three children, Thad, Andrea and Joab. They owned and managed Parker Training Stables, where they worked side by side all over the western United States. When not on a horse, Clark enjoyed golfing with Annie, hunting, reading, watching sports and woodworking.

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Clark was a master at training and showing horses in a wide range of events, from halter and western pleasure to reining, roping and cutting. His dedication extended to teaching and guiding youth and amateurs in these disciplines, helping them achieve success in the equestrian world. They consistently placed in the top 10 at prestigious events like the AQHA World Championship Show, AQHYA World Championship Show, All American Quarter Horse Congress and amateur champion shows.

Clark’s influence reached far beyond the arena. He worked as the manager of MBJ Quarter Horse Ranch in Wichita, Kansas. He served as president of the Intermountain Quarter Horse Association, president of the Utah Quarter Horse Association and an AQHA national director for the Western U. S. and Canada. He proudly held an AQHA judges card for over 40 years. Clark’s keen eye and expertise led him to judge prominent events such as the AQHA World Show, Youth World, All American Quarter Horse Congress, AQHA Select World Show, and numerous other Quarter Horse shows and futurities. He also lent his judging skills to horse shows in various other countries in Europe, South America and Australia.

Clark was inducted into the Utah Quarter Horse Hall of Fame. He served as a steward for AQHA and received the prestigious Lifetime Achievement Award for his outstanding contributions to the breed. In 2013, Clark was honored by his peers, who voted him the Professional Horseman of the Year.

A celebration of Clark’s life will be held at 11 a.m. January 12 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, 155 East 9400 South in Paradise. There will be a family visitation from 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the church prior to the service.

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To send flowers for the family of Clark Ralph Parker, please visit the Cache Valley Mortuary Sympathy Store.

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