UPDATE 4: 35 horses die in Happy Valley Farm fire
Thirty-five high-priced American Saddlebred show horses died in in a fire at a Rossville horse stable Thursday night.
The fire broke out just after 8:30 at Happy Valley Farms in Rossville, a show horse breeding and training operation.
Four stallions, considered by Happy Valley Farms to be the backbone of their breeding operation perished in the fire.
The horses' value is estimated to range from $3 to $6 million dollars.
Glenn Allen, a spokesman for Georgia's fire marshal described the animals as show horses, and said that some were valued as high as $250,000 each.
The structures are valued at $1.2 million.
Walker County Fire and Emergency Services Chief Randy Camp said the owner told him the horses were not insured, but the stables buildings were.
The farm has had nearly 25 foals born in 2013.
A neighbor called 911 when he saw smoke and flames. He tells Channel 3 he also heard explosions.
Daniel Jenner, one of the farm's horse trainers, said the structure was completely engulfed within 20 minutes. "We were able to get one horse out of an end stall on the back side of the barn adjacent to the indoor arena. lt was too hot and smokey to get anywhere near the main barn aisle."
Dispatchers confirm that one stable was destroyed. A second stable was possibly damaged as the fire spread.
Walker County fire officials are investigating the fire.
The horses lost include:
- WC Merchant Prince, who won the Three Year Old Fine Harness National Futurity in 1986 and was sire of many great world's champions, including World's Grand Champion Fine Harness and World's Grand Champion Three-Gaited CH A Sweet Treat, CH Marching Orders, and CH Rejoice among many others.
- RWC I'm The Prince - sire of twice World's Grand Champion Three-Gaited CH Grande Gil.
- WC Harlem's Friendly Conversation, sire of World's Champions Kalarama's Delightful
and With A Friend
- Stallion son of I'm The Prince, Magical Me
- WC With A Friend
- RWC So Persuasive
- I Insist
- A number of promising prospects including two full brothers to WC Grande Gill, I'm Grande and Grande Prince
- A Junior prospect by Harlem's Friendly Conversation, l'll Just Say, who was being
readied for competition at the Kentucky State Fair World's Championship
- Daughter of Such Sweet Memories and Little Soul, daughter of In My Soul