07/20/2016 3:40PM

Husband: Snowden hit hard by loss of colt


Dennis Snowden confirmed on Wednesday that his wife, trainer Monique Snowden, was found dead after apparently committing suicide Sunday evening. Her body was discovered underneath a bridge crossing the Green River in Enumclaw, Wash.

“The medical examiner hasn’t completed his investigation, but they showed me a piece of jewelry that belonged to her,” he said.

Monique Snowden was distraught after a horse she trained, The Chilli Man, broke down in the $50,000 Emerald Express on Sunday and had to be euthanized.

The Chilli Man, who was purchased by Heidi Nelson for $70,000 out of the Ocala Breeders’ Sales Co.’s March sale of 2-year-olds, was an 11 1/2-length winner when he debuted in a maiden special weight race at Emerald on June 26. He was going to be transferred to trainer Kathy Ritvo and owner Dean Reeves following the Emerald Express.

“Monique felt a lot of pressure about running him Sunday,” Dennis Snowden said. “She didn’t see what was to be gained. She told me he galloped tremendously on Saturday, though. With the deal in the works, he had also been X-rayed extensively, and they all confirmed he was sound.”

The last time Snowden saw his wife was during the card Sunday, when another horse she trains, Thetrailerguy, finished out of the money in the ninth race.

Snowden is the assistant to trainer Frank Lucarelli.

“I had my arm around her trying to console her because she was crying and was devastated,” he said. “Frank had a horse in the last race, and I told her I would see her after the race. When I went to the barn, she was gone. I tried to call her, but she never answered.”

Monique Snowden, 37, began training Thoroughbreds in 2010. She won 31 races from 193 starters.

“She was completely dedicated to her horses,” said Dennis Snowden. “She was a great student and was very successful in just a short time. Look at what she did with Disruption. She brought him back to win a race after being off for over a year, and she was very proud of him when he came back to finish third to Stryker Phd in the Mount Rainier.”
Snowden said Monique became depressed when her mother died from cancer a few years ago.

“It was really tough on her, and she was never really the same after it happened,” he said. “She still loved her life working with horses, and she was so positive about a lot of things. She just took what happened on Sunday too hard.”

Snowden said a memorial service will be planned after his wife’s body is released by the medical examiner.

Marlene Gallahan More than 1 year ago
Mr. Snowden, There are no words adequate enough to express my sorrow for your loss.  You and your loved ones will be in my thoughts and prayers.  I have been deeply impacted by the series of tragic events which occurred on Sunday.  Please accept my deepest sympathy and heartfelt condolences.
Mike James More than 1 year ago
I am so sorry Snowman,,,
Sandy Lunetti Owens More than 1 year ago
My heartfelt thoughts and prayers are with Dennis, and the family at this tragic loss.  My you all find peace!  
Jocelyne Kenny More than 1 year ago
Dennis ... I'm so sorry ... strength my friend in tough times .. in my thoughts
Michael Murray More than 1 year ago
When racing becomes more important than real life, only tragedy can ensue.
Tara Umble More than 1 year ago
Pattie Smith-Wade More than 1 year ago
I'm so sorry for your loss Dennis my prayers go out to the family in these hard times
Kaylynn McKathan More than 1 year ago
Truly heartbreaking.  My deepest condolences to Mr.Snowden and may God rest Mrs.Snowden's and The Chili Man's Souls in Eternal Peace.
TrackPhantom More than 1 year ago
Really one of the hardest stories I've read. Just tragic.  My condolences to everyone involved.  
Karen Norberg Kelsch More than 1 year ago

I feel tremendous compassion for the Snowdens and I understand her depression and how other things can magnify it, especially something as significant as this tragedy.  God rest their souls Monique and The Chili Man.

I would add however, that we as a nation, run our horses TOO YOUNG.  They are not skeletally are musclelarly (sp?) mature until they are at least 5 YEARS OLD.  SO many of these tragedies could have been avoided if we would just get our heads screwed on straight and give them time to mature.  Alas, money talks.

Keith Valentine More than 1 year ago
Alas, she was right, after a workout on Saturday, there was no point in running on Sunday...what a horrible loss
fleetpacific More than 1 year ago
The pitfalls of good horses - the pressure. He is correct;  they gained nothing by running him but stood to lose, we'll - everything.  

I remember feeling literal nausea every time Zenyatta ran, and I was just a fan.