Inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 2002
Waldo Haythorn grew up on a ranch, and when he tried to leave, the ranch called him back.
Haythorn was born on March 25, 1917, at the Haythorn home ranch. He moved to Ogallala, Nebraska, in 1923 with his mother, where he attended school through his freshman year. He graduated from St. John’s Military Academy in Salina, Kansas in 1936.
In the fall of 1936, Haythorn entered the veterinary medicine program at Colorado State University, but cut his education short to return home and ranch with his father.
He attended the Ryons School of Aeronautics at Lemberg Field, San Diego, California in 1937. In 1941, he joined the service and was placed in the civilian pilot training program, where he trained pilots for the Army and Navy.
On September 14, 1943, Haythorn married Beldora Cochran. The couple honeymooned in Seymour, Texas. His wife often claimed that it was his intent to work their honeymoon into a horse-buying trip. They bought two stud colts, Blue Rock and Honeymoon.
The Haythorn’s ranch near Ogallala, Nebraska, has produced quality ranch horses for more than 60 years. The legacy of Haythorn Land and Cattle Co. began with Harry Haythorn in 1884 and is currently carried on by Waldo’s son, Craig. The ranch received the first AQHA Best Remuda Award in 1992.
In 1997, the ranch was presented with the AQHA Legacy Award for 50 consecutive years of breeding American Quarter Horses.
Haythorn was an active Quarter Horse breeder, and judged AQHA shows for nearly 30 years. He also conducted several AQHA clinics. He was an original member of the Cowboys Turtle Association.
Haythorn was inducted into the American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame in 2002, and died the same year.