Old Friends Farm remembers former Governor Brereton Jones

Old Friends Farm remembers former Governor Brereton Jones
Published: Sep. 25, 2023 at 10:52 PM EDT
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GEORGETOWN, Ky. (WKYT) - Former Governor Brereton Jones, lay in state at the Kentucky Capitol on Monday.

He was passionate about several causes, but none closer to his heart, than the equine industry.

“There was nobody ever in the history of the horse racing business in Kentucky that has meant more to these horses, than Governor Jones,” said Michael Blowen, Founder of Old Friends Farm in Georgetown.

Blowen remembers the time he sat down with Jones when he first got the idea for his farm.

“He said, ‘you’re gonna get these horses, right?’ Yes. ‘You’re gonna bring some horses from Japan.’ Correct. “You’re not gonna breed ‘em,’ no. “You’re not gonna sell ‘em.’ No.

What exactly are you gonna do? I’m gonna put ‘em in my yard and hope people come visit.

Jones wrote a $5,000 check on the spot.

Blowen says it wasn’t just the money that meant something.

It was the support and 20 years of friendship that came along with it.

“All the problems they’re having in racing now, with nobody cooperating with one another. They all would’ve been solved if he wasn’t sick,” said Blowen. “He’s the one person that could’ve brought everybody together because everybody respected him. Everybody adored him and everybody knew he was really really smart.”

Blowen and other dignitaries from both sides of the aisle stood in line at the capitol for hours, waiting to pay their respects.

“Everybody was telling great stories about him,” said Blowen. “I realized he touched lives of all these different people. I think he made a positive impact on everybody that was there on their lives individually.”

He says it was a remarkable example of unit, that could only be pulled off in honor of Jones.

“Huge loss,” he said. “I think the loss of Governor Jones is the greatest loss in the history of the commonwealth of Kentucky and the tradition of horse racing.”

Old Friends Farm is planning on a small tribute outside of a new barn they recently finished.

Blowen says nothing big or flashy, just the way Jones would’ve preferred.

“Some of my fondest memories are us driving around in a golf cart and looking at all of the horses,” he said. “Showing them around to somebody who really knew what they were looking at. It’s just a terrible loss for racing. It’s a terrible personal loss and I just adored the guy.”

Jones funeral will be held Tuesday at 10 a.m. at the Forks of the Elkhorn Baptist Church in Midway.