06/17/2012 11:54AM

Diamond D Ranch founder Ed Dodwell dies at 72


Ed Dodwell, a prominent Texas horseman whose Diamond D Ranch in Lone Oak, Texas,  gave Rachel Alexandra, the 2009 Horse of the Year, her early training lessons, died Sunday, confirmed his daughter-in-law, Jodi Dodwell. He was 72.

Dodwell suffered a heart attack early Sunday morning, and was pronounced dead at Presbyterian Hospital in Greenville, Texas. Services will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at Coker-Mathews Funeral Home in Greenville, Texas, said Jodi Dodwell.

Ed Dodwell was born in Travis, Texas, and grew up in the Waco area. He began training as a teenager, and made a name for himself with the top-class Quarter Horse runner Quincy Rocket. Dodwell would go on to dominate a number of Thoroughbred stakes for 2-year-olds in the Southwest region, including the Jean Laffite at Delta Downs and juvenile races at Louisiana Downs and tracks across Texas. 

He founded Diamond D Ranch in 1981 with his wife, Caroline. The 185-acre training center east of Dallas develops about 100 young horses for the track each season, and through the years the Dodwells have turned out 192 individual stakes winners. Rachel Alexandra is the most prominent graduate, while others include Jim’s Orbit, Morris Code, Baghdaria, Showtime Deb, Darby’s Daughter,  and Rapid Proof. Dodwell retired in 2004 following a heart attack, and his son, Jimmy  Dodwell now serves as farm trainer and manager of Diamond D, with assistance from Caroline.

“We want to say thank you for all the prayers and concerns during this difficult time,” said Jodi Dodwell, who is married to Jimmy.

Ed Dodwell is also survived by a daughter, Dawn Hofer, who lives in the North Texas town of Trophy Club.