by Jo Warren

reprinted from The Canadian Appaloosa Journal, July 1973

Born 17 years ago in the hills of Colorado, Patchy Junior's Lila Gleska has become a legend in the Appaloosa Breed. I had purchased a horse from Dick Spencer, "Witanka", and after our arrangements to haul him fell through, I made a phone call to my old friend, Ben Johnson, and he agreed to haul the stallion for me. But he said he didn't really want to haul a two-horse trailer with only one horse and suggested that I buy a horse from him. He said he had a little mare with lots of color who would make a class look better. I agreed to purchase her for a few hundred dollars.

In June 1957,  Ben arrived at the National at Canby, Oregon with the two horses and I took over possession of my little shaggy red leopard yearling filly. She had a long mane and a tail down to the ground and looked really neglected. I asked Ben what her name was and he said they called her "Tweedie Pie". This was enough to further upset me. So I went into the office and asked Dick Spencer to give her a name. He suggested "Lila Gleska" in the little office at the Canby, Oregon, Fairgrounds. I decided she could not look any worse, so Ben and I clipped her from end to end. We roached her mane and pulled her tail.

And I took her in the Yearling Class the next day and won FIRST.

I had just won the Class and was holding her on the grass when along came a spotted stallion who had just won the 2-year-old class .... running loose.... with his owner coming behind. And after a fair amount of exchange of words, this was the best beginning of a friendship with one of the best known ladies who is still raising Appaloosas today. At this particular show I believe they hired an artillery man to produce the fireworks. It sounded like a war had broken out and things were flying everywhere. Horses running loose - sparks set some of the barn roofs on fire, etc. The old-time breeder will remember this National.

I bred Lila as a 2-year-old - and she has just had her 14th foal - all Appaloosas. She has been bred to Appaloosas, Quarter Horses, Thoroughbreds and has consistently produced Champions. From this mare, excluding the three daughters of hers that I own, she has averaged over $2000. per foal.
Her Grand Champions of shows I have lost count of. She won shows like the National, The P.N.E. in Vancouver, the Palouse Empire, both at Halter and Performance. She was the only mare to beat "R.O.Princess Pat", who won the National and who had up to that time been undefeated at Halter. At the National at Walla Walla her foals that I had sold were able to win 2nd and 3rd Produce of Dam Class.
Some of her foals who were both Champions at Halter and Performance were:

Warren's Wardance - Northwest Champion
Warren's Drifting Drums - Northwest Champion
Warren's Tribal Dance - Champion at Palouse Empire
Warren's Firedance - Junior Champion, Palouse Empire
Warren's Distant Drums - Hi Point, B.C. Appaloosa Club
Warren's Old Jo - Hi Point Stallion, B.C. Appaloosa Club

Patchy Junior's Lila Gleska is a daughter of Patchy Junior, both National Champion at Halter and Performance; a granddaughter of Patchy 416, who also was National Champion. She is also a half-sister to Shawn Tonga, also a National Champion.

The sequel to this story is on the way home from the National in Albuquerque, New Mexico. I ran into a veterinarian who saw the advertisement on my trailer and asked me if I was the Canadian who bought a leopard filly from Ben Johnson. I said I was and then he said, "Well, I'm the one who sold her to Ben" - And to this day, I have never been able to find out from Ben how much the mare actually cost. We still have Lila Gleska here at the Border Appaloosa Ranch which is on the American border. I have today sold another of her daughters who is going to Cuba and who will further perpetuate her blood. Lila seems to continue to raise champion caliber type horses. As long as I am able to keep her daughters, they will provide a comfortable living. We are standing "Top Hat, Jr." here at the ranch and for the last two years she has produced two outstanding fillies. I think a further compliment to her is that the Cuban Veterinarian would have taken all her offspring that I have. She is safe in foal to one of the top B.B.'s and if she raises four or five more colts by that time I will be retired. A great deal of the reason for being able to do so is that this mare has produced me enough colts that sold for sufficient money to buy my farm, arena and install the latest equipment. Through this mare we established our business. As long as Lila is around, I will stay in the Appaloosa breeding business and when the old mare passes on I too will quit.
I haven't talked to Ben Johnson lately, but I am thinking that anyone interested in going into the Appaloosa business with one or two mares that would be profitable and would establish himself might check with Ben to see if he has another one of these kind of mares hidden away in the hills.

reprinted from The Canadian Appaloosa Journal, July 1973

Some Interesting Statistics
Production Record

Registration # Name Sex Foal Date
11250 Warrens Wap'Em Jo S 5/23/76
14841 Warrens Broadway Jo S 04/15/78
16930 Gleskas Mighty Red G 04/13/79
1830 Chief's Charm M 05/01/61
2448 Warrens Tribal Dance S 03/29/64
26009 Harstar M 06/10/80
2989 Warren's Firedance S 04/15/65
3095 Warren's Distant Drums M 05/22/67
31933 Warren's Wardance S ?
4765 Warren's Ol' Jo S 08/15/65
6084 Warrens Bobbie-Jo M ?
68258 Warren's Drifting Drums S ?
7221 Warrens Top Secret M 02/22/73
7222 Warrens Delilah M 02/22/72
9716 Warrens' Hobo Jo G 06/05/75
Show Records
Name / Class
Warrens Wap'Em Jo - # 11250
Gleskas Mighty Red - # 16930
Western Riding
Western Pleasure
Warrens Ol' Jo - # 4765
Western Pleasure
Warrens Bobbie-Jo - # 6084
Superior Award - Halter
Warrens Top Secret - # 7221
Warrens Delilah - # 7222
Superior Award - Halter
English Pleasure
Western Riding
Western Pleasure
Warrens' Hobo Jo - # 9716


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