Presley seeks to revoke Walking Horse contest trophy

Cross-posted from USA Today

Tennessee Walking horse watches worriedly during horse soring inspections. Photo: HSUS.
Tennessee Walking horse watches worriedly from his stall during horse soring inspections following an undercover operation by HSUS that exposed some of the gross cruelties perpetuated on these animals for the sake of human greed and ego. Photo: HSUS.

WRITTEN BY HEIDI HALL
The Tennessean

There won’t be a Graceland Challenge Trophy at the nation’s premier walking horse competition next year after its donor, Priscilla Presley, decided to take it back after three decades.

Presley said she didn’t know the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration still awarded the trophy, given in memory of her ex-husband, Elvis Presley. She attended the Shelbyville, Tenn., event in 1983 and donated it as part of an exhibition featuring Ebony’s Double, the last walking horse Elvis Presley ever bought. She thought it was a one-time award, but it’s been given every year since and is listed in the latest Celebration program under prizes for the Four-Year-Old Walking Horse World Grand Championship.

Today, she owns two Tennessee Walking Horses, stabled on the grounds of the Presley family’s Graceland estate in Memphis, and is a vocal supporter of a federal bill seeking to end abuse of the breed.

“Graceland isn’t going to support this, knowing what we know now,” Presley said Tuesday. “We want that trophy back.

“I can’t support the trophy when inhumane methods are used on these horses. I can’t support it.”

The Celebration hasn’t yet received the request, said CEO Mike Inman, but that could be because the offices are closed for the holidays. He said he would like a chance to speak to Presley before she makes a final decision.

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3 thoughts on “Presley seeks to revoke Walking Horse contest trophy”

  1. Thank you for bringing this Vivian. I am hoping this year, the horse will be protected and respected. If wishes could come true, this would be one I would choose. Everyone who loves our horses must get in touch with their political representatives and make their voice known.

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