10/22/2004 11:00PM

Reed, vet and breeder, dies

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Dr. William Reed, an internationally known and respected equine practitioner who also bred several notable horses, died Saturday morning at Winthrop Hospital in Long Island, N.Y., after a battle with Alzheimer's disease. He was 83.

Reed may be best known for the surgery he performed on the ill-fated Ruffian at his veterinary clinic across the street from Belmont Park, following her injury during the match race against Foolish Pleasure on July 6, 1975.

A native of Wilford Center, Ohio, Reed earned his veterinary degree from Ohio State University in 1944. In 1948, Reed diagnosed and treated Stymie's sesamoid fracture in his right front foot following a fourth-place finish in the Monmouth Handicap.

Other top horses Reed worked on were Dr. Fager, Damascus, Summer Solstice, Tim Tam, Hoist the Flag, and Conquistador Cielo.

In addition to his equine practice, Reed and his wife, Audrey, owned and operated Mare Haven Farm near Lexington, Ky. Among the horses bred by Reed were Known Fact, Goodbye Halo, and Gone West. Reed is a past president of the American Association of Equine Practitioners.

Visitation will be at the Fairchild Funeral Home at 1201 Franklin Ave. in Garden City on Monday from 2 to 4 p.m. and 7 to 9 p.m.

A funeral will be held Tuesday at 10 a.m. at St. Joseph's Roman Catholic Church in Garden City.

Reed is survived by his wife.