Lunch with the Living Legends
National Bird Dog Museum
By Tonya Brotherton, Executive Director
Saturday, May 6, 2017 was quite an eventful day here at the National Bird Dog Museum. We had Lunch with the Living Legends and it was a great day! All of the owners, trainers and handlers present were very excited and touched to be here, along with the ladies that accompanied them. As Bud Moore stated, their wives are their supporters, they helped them along the way, and helped them get where they are today.
Although many of us have all kinds of interests, we all have one thing in common - the admiration for these guys and their love of the sport.
We heard many nostalgic stories and many great memories were shared at this event. It was a fun and heartwarming event for me to see the spark in the eyes of these men as they greeted each other - some for the first time in many years. As I stated in my opening remarks that day, "the flame still burns deep inside the hearts of these fellows." Collier Smith said it best when he stated, "Our bodies may have betrayed us, but if you look in our eyes you'll see that our souls are still young."
As you can plainly see the intense and focused expression in the eye of [their] dogs, so it was in the eyes of these legends. They have an intense love for the dogs, each other, and for the sport.
These guys have made a long-lasting impression on the hearts of all they have encountered throughout life's journey. The encouragement and words of wisdom they passed down to us was exhilarating and thought provoking.
As Bud stated - "Field Trialing is a gentleman's sport. It is not about winning or losing. Someone must certainly win and others lose, but it's about being part of the mythical hunt, always seeking perfection but being willing to overlook imperfections."
I must say I was in the presence of real gentlemen that day. It was an amazing day because I know what it meant to these great men to meet together again.
2017 Living Legends honored were Robert Milner, Roy Jines, Bill Hunt, Billy Morton, Freddie Epp, John Rex Gates, Harold Ray, Dave Fletcher, Hoyle Eaton, Delmar Smith, Gary Lockee, Joe Walker, Garland Priddy, Buddy Smith, Peter Kainz, Collier Smith, Ferrel Miller, and CW Bud Moore.