'Very few individuals exhibited the drive ... of Mr. Duchossois': Reactions to the death of Mr. D
Reactions to the death of Arlington Park Chairman Emeritus Richard Duchossois poured in Friday afternoon.
Arlington Park President Tony Petrillo
"The loss of our wonderful friend and leader Mr. D leaves the Arlington Family with a heavy heart, yet we are warmed by the memories he gave us and the communities he touched through his long life. We extend our deepest condolences to his wife Judi and his surviving children Craig, Dayle and Kim and their large extended family. Mr. D accomplished many good things in life. He worked hard and always followed the path of honesty and integrity which is a gift that he passed on to all of us around him. We are most grateful to him for sharing this gift with us. Mr. D loved being around people, being a part of the community, picking people up by their bootstraps and watching them succeed. He was the consummate teacher, he always preached "Don't Expect What You Didn't Inspect," to take the responsibility you place on others, upon yourself as well. We are forever grateful for his loyalty and enduring friendship. HAPPY TRAILS to you, until we meet again."
Churchill Downs Inc. CEO Bill Carstanjen
"We are profoundly saddened today by the loss of Richard Duchossois. He was a tireless champion of Churchill Downs and thoroughbred racing. His impact on those of us involved in this industry was simply immeasurable. He was a mentor and friend to so many in Churchill Downs, most especially me, and we will all miss his grace, wisdom and humor. His contributions to Churchill Downs and thoroughbred racing were merely a small part of his extraordinary life. They call his generation 'America's Greatest' and to be fortunate to spend time with this man was to be in the presence of a truly special individual who led a full life of sacrifice, commitment and service to others. We will mourn him, miss him and wonder if there could ever be another like Richard Duchossois."
Illinois Thoroughbred Horsemen's Association
"On behalf of Illinois thoroughbred owners and trainers, we extend our deepest condolences to the family and friends of Dick Duchossois. Mr. D served our nation with distinction and thereafter brought his enduring tenacity and exceptional work ethic to the helm of Arlington Park -- a track he worked to build into a world-class destination for thoroughbred horse racing. As we mourn his loss, we are reminded of his immense contributions to thoroughbred racing in North America, most especially here in Illinois. His imprint on the sport and industry was vast and will not be forgotten."
State Sen. Dan McConchie, a Hawthorn Woods Republican
"My thoughts and condolences are with the Duchossois family. Richard lived his 100 years of life to the fullest and will be remembered for his many accomplishments. The 26th Senate District was fortunate to have Richard as a constituent. His dedication to his country and community should forever be honored."
"Richard L. Duchossois was a great American who served his country valiantly during World War II, and later served the Thoroughbred industry with great honor and distinction. Very few individuals exhibited the drive and determination of Mr. Duchossois in his very full and successful life. Following a devastating fire that destroyed the Arlington Park grandstand in 1985, he conducted the Arlington Million under tents, and it was dubbed as the 'Miracle Million.' He then rebuilt Arlington Park into one of the shining jewels of all racetracks. Mr. Duchossois propelled the Arlington Million into a top international showcase and paved the way for further interest in global competition among the world's top Thoroughbreds. It was our great pleasure to bring the 2002 Breeders' Cup to Arlington Park with Mr. Duchossois at the helm. We cherish his legacy and extend our deepest condolences to the Duchossois family."