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2002/03/08

Charnel Gene Owens 1947-2002 by Tom Burriss The horse world, as well as the human race, has been blessed by the life, example, and generosity of Gene Owens. We are grieved to announce his passing on Sunday, February 17, 2002. Charnel Gene Owens was known to many horse enthusiasts, barrel racers and saddle clubs in West Tennessee and beyond. He was a cowboy. He loved horses, and he loved to ride," notes Billy Griswell, and "he really liked that barrel racing." Barrel racing may have been a focus for Gene, but not his forte. "His generosity," answers Tami Owens, when asked about his most outstanding quality. "He was always giving kids saddles, helping with their riding, and donating awards." "The best thing I can remember is that anyone who needed help, whether they were sick or hurt, he was the first one to give a hand. You didn't have to ask him either, he would just volunteer," says Griswell. In September 2001, Owens was diagnosed and treated for brain cancer. As he helped so many times before, a benefit was held for him the following November at the Rafter G. Arena in Michie, Tennessee. "Mr. Gene was presented all the awards to all the winners," (MSHR December 2001) on that day. "He had won more than 15 saddles and 30 buckles, but presenting awards brought him more delight than winning them." Gene Owens death was a result of complications from his cancer. He is survived by his wife Mary Thacker Owens; sons Toby and Eric Owens; sisters Christine Passmore and Nadine Wagoner; brothers Marlin, Alvin, Junior, David, Larry, Butch and Joe Owens. The family would like to thank all those in the community for their outpouring of support through flowers and cards.

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