07/19/2016 1:17PM

Emerald Downs trainer Snowden dies in apparent suicide

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Emerald Downs-based trainer Monique Snowden apparently committed suicide Sunday evening. Snowden was thought to be distraught after a horse she trained, The Chilli Man, broke down in the $50,000 Emerald Express at Emerald on Sunday and had to be euthanized.

Snowden, 37, was thought to have jumped off a bridge into the Green River in Enumclaw, Wash.

Snowden was married to Dennis Snowden, who is the assistant trainer to Frank Lucarelli.

“Dennis said they found her car at the bridge,” Lucarelli said on Tuesday.

“Everybody is devastated. First the horses goes and then this. I told Dennis to take a few days off but he wants to keep working.”

Joe Withee, director of publicity and broadcasting at Emerald Downs, on Tuesday said that details of Monique Snowden’s death were unknown.

The Chilli Man was an impressive debut winner for Snowden and owner Heidi Nelson. Nelson had purchased the son of Trappe Shot for $70,000 out of the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.’s March sale of 2-year-olds in training.

The Chilli Man earned an 81 Beyer Speed Figure for his win, and at the time it was the fourth best figure among 2-year-olds in North America. He was making his last start for Nelson in the Emerald Express. Following the Emerald Express he reportedly was going to be transferred to trainer Kathy Ritvo and owner Dean Reeves, who had purchased him for an undisclosed sum. They were on hand to watch the race at Emerald on Sunday.