Updated on 08/29/2013 9:02AM

Jeff Coady, racing photographer, dead at 62

Coady Photography
Jeff Coady, who ran Coady Photography with his brother, Jack, died Monday at age 62.

Jeff Coady, who with his brother, Jack, owned and operated one of the largest and most respected winner’s circle photography companies in racing, died Monday night, according to a family member. He was 62.

Coady died at his home in Luling, Texas, after a battle with cancer. Services will be held at First Baptist Church in Luling on Sept. 4 at 1 p.m. Central. The dates of memorial services that will be held in his native Arizona and at Oaklawn Park are to be determined. The family requests that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to either the Oaklawn Park Chaplaincy or First Baptist Church.

Coady Photography has contracts at more than 20 tracks in North America. The company was started by Jack Coady Sr., in 1962, at Turf Paradise in Phoenix. Jack Coady, Sr., died in 2008.

Jeff Coady was a beloved fixture in the winner’s circles at a host of tracks, including Colonial Downs, Keeneland, and Oaklawn. He was a racing enthusiast who cared deeply for the welfare of the sport and its people. During the Oaklawn season, Coady was often out before dawn, taking pictures of Triple Crown hopefuls training in Hot Springs. His work graced not only thousands of promotional materials for the tracks with which he had contracts, but it also appeared regularly in numerous publications, including Daily Racing Form.

Coady helped grow his family’s business, moving the Arizona-based firm into markets like Florida, Kentucky, and Virginia. He quietly employed a small army of individuals connected to racing, from exercise riders to jockeys’ wives to the working-age children of trainers. In them, he helped cultivate a passion for equine photography. Coady was also quietly a very generous man, not only to his employees, but to charitable causes, particularly fundraisers for those in racing.

He is to be honored later this fall at the Texas Horse Racing Hall of Fame gala at Retama Park.

Coady’s family was a constant presence beside him in his final months. His survivors include his wife, Nelda, and his sons, Shawn, Kurtis, Kevin and Christopher.

Jack Coady will continue to operate the family business with the help of his nephews.

Ricardo DeBello More than 1 year ago
Jeff hired me at their track photographer at Sunland Park 2006. He interviewed me and hired me on the spot. I will be for ever gracious for his hiring, friendship, professionalism and knowledge. Jeff Coady  taught me so much in the race industry, life in general and introduced me to a new lifestyle; the racing industry.

Thank you Mr. Coady. May you rest in peace, I am forever grateful and my prayers and thoughts are always with you and yours.

Shelley Meyers Winter More than 1 year ago
Prayers to the Coady family...
Tony Wood More than 1 year ago
Very sorry to hear about Jeff. He was my boss and good friend at Trinity Meadows. He taught me a lot about camera work and photography and how to deal with work life in general. It was my first job out of high school. I helped him work on a huge buss and he and I formed a friendship that while we lost touch, I have always remembered! I am sorry he is gone!
Shig Kikkawa More than 1 year ago
Our deepest sympathy to the Coady family. Jeff was a true professional and a great host to other photographers who came to visit and work at his venue. He was helpful, considerate and courteous. Thank you for the many courtesies extended to us. Shig Kikkawa
Diane Obusek More than 1 year ago
My thoughts and prayers are with the Coady family. His photographs captured the true beauty of the sport.
Mike More than 1 year ago
He took pictures of my horse - Very Beautiful - A good Man.
Union_Rags More than 1 year ago
Paula Marie More than 1 year ago
Always gracious, generous, and a great mentor to so many of my friends who are racing photographers. My deepest sympathy to his family and his wide circle of friends in racing.
Melodi Christina More than 1 year ago
God Bless the Coady family. Jeff will be dearly missed by so many, including my grandmother, Theresa Stanford. Jeff and my grandmother were dear friends for many years and I know that this is a terrible loss for her. All family and friends of this amazing man will be in my thoughts and prayers. Love, Melodi Wheeler
Cindy Albrecht More than 1 year ago
R.I.P. Dear man, I so enjoyed your photography, in fact I have several of your pictures. Will continue to enjoy them. All the best to the COADY family.