News and Articles from the Livestock Conservancy (formerly ALBC)
Bryant and Darlene Rickman Receive Bixby-Sponenberg Award
This "Award recognizes people that have stood between breeds of livestock and their extinction. These people are true heroes of breed conservation."
By Dr. Phil Sponenberg
"Bryant and Darlene Rickman have diligently worked to keep the Choctaw horse from extinction. This effort also includes the Cherokee and Huasteca horses. Without the Rickmans all three of these strains of Colonial Spanish Horse would have disappeared long ago. This effort has extended over decades, and has involved heroic action including the maintenance of a herd of equine infectious anemia (EIA) infected horses in order to assure that their infection-free foals could continue rare bloodlines on into the present.
Being in the Kiamichi Mountains with Bryant, calling up the horses, and seeing what new foals were added to the group was always a special thrill. Being in Darlene's kitchen was also always special, and usually included some of the world's best biscuits served up with big helpings of love and good humor. If I had a special horse that needed to go to Oklahoma for a while, I would always make sure to give it to Darlene, because I knew the horse would get special attention and care. The only real disagreement we had was on horse names, because none of mine were dignified enough!
The Rickman family has been essential to Choctaw horse conservation in many ways. They have also contributed greatly to Choctaw hog conservation, and without their input this breed would also now be extinct."
Looking Back and Forward with Choctaws
Published in the former "ALBC" now "The Livestock Conservancy" Quarterly Newsletter January - March 2013