Bill L. Sutton, 85, of Kirksville, Missouri, passed away Monday (May 21, 2012) at Northeast Regional Medical Center in Kirksville.
The son of Roy Reece and Grace (Burn) Sutton, he was born January 2, 1927 in Mt. Vernon, Missouri. In 1953 in Kirksville, Missouri, Bill was united in marriage to Joan Charles.
Bill is survived by his wife, Joan of fifty-nine years; three daughters and sons-in-law, Gwen and Kim Galloway, Gale and Steve Frazier and Geri and David Higgins all of Kirksville, MO; one brother, Roy “Sonny” Sutton of Lee’s Summit, MO; one sister, Shirley O’Brien of Chandler, AZ; three grandchildren, Holly Galloway of Columbia, MO, Joe Galloway of Chesterfield, MO and Cassie Kauffman of Columbia, MO as well as one great grandson, Christopher Galloway of Chesterfield, MO.
He was preceded in death by his parents and one sister, Lavada Hall.
Bill graduated from high school in Mt. Vernon, Missouri. From 1945 to 1947, Bill served in the United States Army. In 1952, he moved to the Kirksville area and was a professional saddle bred horse trainer, owning his own business fifty-three years. His title in the horse business was “A master of the game”. Bill bought, sold and trained world champion horses and showed horses all over the United States. He made nine trips to Kentucky every year, plus to Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota and Oklahoma. Bill was awarded the Horseman of the year three times for the United Professional Horse Association for Missouri and was honored at the American Royal in 2001 for Missouri’s Kansas Horseman of the year presented to him by Governor Holden. He was a lifetime member of United Professional Horse Association, holding office for ten years. Bill was forced to retire in 2002 due to ill health.
Bill was a loving husband, father and grandfather. His professional business was his life and he enjoyed his life.
It was Bill’s wish to be cremated and a private family memorial service will be held at a later date.
Arrangements were taken care of by Travis-Noe Funeral Home of Kirksville.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the Bill Sutton Memorial Fund to be distributed among horse organizations in his honor. Memorials may be left at or mailed to Travis-Noe Funeral Home, P.O. Box 306, Kirksville, MO 63501.