Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Horse breeder 'Bazy' Tankersley, of Al-Marah Arabians, dies at 91 - Full Article

Veronica M. Cruz - Arizona Daily Star

Ruth "Bazy" McCormick Tankersley, renowned Arabian horse breeder and the founder of St. Gregory College Preparatory School, died Tuesday at her home. She was 91.

Tankersley bought her first purebred Arabian horse when she was 19 years old and opened Al-Marah Arabians in her early 20s when she and her husband moved to Tucson in 1941, according to Star archives.

Tankersley moved the ranch to Maryland in the 1950s but returned to Tucson in the mid-1970s.

In 2001, Tankersley bequeathed the 85-acre property at 4101 N. Bear Canyon Road to the University of Arizona, which will continue to use the property as a working ranch.

Tankersley also helped found horse breeder organizations, created a program to train young horse lovers and was a supporter of Therapeutic Riding of Tucson, known as TROT, a program that helps children with disabilities ride horses.

"You see, I come from that old-fashioned background of noblesse oblige: If you're born with money, you have an obligation to do good works for others," Tankersley said in a biography. "Only in recent years did I come to feel that through Arabian horses I might do more for my fellows than in any other way."

Tankersley was born in Chicago in 1921. Her father, Medill McCormick, was a U.S. senator from Illinois and her mother, Ruth Hanna McCormick, was an Illinois congresswoman. Both parents were also in the newspaper industry...

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