R. Bruce Duchossois
The United States Equestrian Team (USET) Foundation lost a dear friend and leader yesterday, July 2. Vice President R. Bruce Duchossois passed away after a courageous battle with cancer.
Elected vice president of the organization in 2013, Duchossois has long been an invaluable supporter of the USET Foundation, giving generously of his own time and resources for the betterment of the high performance equestrian sport in the United States. He served as a member of the USET Foundation Executive Committee, as the Chairman of the Development Committee and as a trustee of the foundation for 16 years.
"Bruce's passing is an incredible loss to everyone who was blessed to know him. His love of the sport and his enthusiasm for our United States Equestrian Teams was unparalleled," said Tucker Johnson, President and CEO of the USET Foundation. "He led by example not only in his support but also in the time he gave and the committees he served and chaired. We were so fortunate to have Bruce as part of the USET Foundation leadership and will miss him very much."
Throughout his rich legacy with the USET Foundation, Duchossois was also instrumental as an owner in multiple disciplines including Driving, Eventing and Show Jumping. Of the most notable of Duchossois's horses was Connaught. Ridden by Phillip Dutton, Connaught helped the U.S. Eventing Team earn Team Gold and Individual Silver at the 2007 Pan American Games, and in 2008, Connaught earned the win at the Rolex Kentucky Three Day Event.
Duchossois's extraordinary support continues beyond his passing, as another of his mounts, Mighty Nice, also ridden by Dutton, is currently short listed for the 2014 World Equestrian Games.
In addition to his work within and support for the USET Foundation, Duchossois also maintained a role as a member of the United States Hunter Jumper Association (USHJA) Zone 4 Committee and as Co-Chair of the Owners Task Force. He served on the National Horse Show Board of Directors, and also was the Chair of the Gentleman's Committee for the prestigious 2013 Alltech National Horse Show. He was a strong supporter of the Middleburg Classic, Capital Challenge and Blowing Rock, as well as having served as an Executive Board member for the Equestrian Aid Foundation. In February 2013, he was awarded the Equestrian Aid Foundation's Luminary Award. During the Devon Horse Show this year, Duchossois was inducted into the National Show Hunter Hall of Fame.
Duchossois served as the Executive Director of Friends of Handicapped Riders, also volunteering his time as a walker within their therapy program. His generosity and support also spilled over to the Vinceremos Therapeutic Riding Center (VTRC) in West Palm Beach, Florida. He adopted a horse each year for use by the VTRC, even then rehoming two of their retired therapeutic horses to his own barn.
Duchossois' excellence and integrity continued into the show ring where he competed as one of the nation's leading exhibitors in the Adult and Amateur-Owner Hunter divisions. He dedicated his life to the equestrian sport, and his legacy will live on as the epitome of a true horseman.
Duchossois’ survivors include his father, Richard L. Duchossois, who is the chairman of Arlington Park, a Thoroughbred racetrack in Illinois.