Hank Leo Hank Leo

Hank Leo, legendary son of Leo dies                                       By Lucile Gallant  -- Journal Editor 

                   A very well-known area stallion, HANK LEO, died last month.  “Ole Hank”, as he was affectionately known by his long-time owner, Robert Luetge of Hempstead, Texas was 28 years old at the time of his death. The beautiful red stallion was an own son of the great LEO, and out of HANK’S SUE, a daughter of HANK H by KING.  Royally bred, HANK LEO stood 14.2, was barrel- chested, short-necked, big-rumped and short-headed: he looked like a Quarter Horse!   Luetge credits the stallion as being one of the driving forces in his life, and responsible for his success in the horse business. Luetge first rode “Ole Hank” when he was working for Ed Duckworth.  The stallion had spent three years on the track as an AA race horse, making quite a name for himself and was being started in roping when he was six years old.  After Duckworth sold his horses, Luetge moved to Hempstead and occasionally would go back to visit the stallion.  “Ole Hank” would run up and down the fence, as if begging Luetge to take him with him and finally, he was initially leased to the Luetge family; in 1966 Robert Luetge made a big decision to purchase the stallion outright from Ed Duckworth.  The first year that Luetge owned him, the stallion bred 40 mares.  They also continued to compete and win in rodeo competition all over the state of Texas.  According to AQUA, HANK LEO had 3 halter points, 11 calf roping points, an ROM in Open Show, ROM in racing with a AA Speed Index with 10 starts, 2 wins, and 1 third.  After a winning season, in 1971, “Ole Hank” was retired – Luetge decided the stallion needed to rest!   Robert Luetge and HANK LEO together made quite a pair and have been acknowledged as “legends” throughout the local horse industry.  Luetge fully believes a horse, like a person, thrives on attention and generously dishes out hugs and kisses, scratchings and pettings to his equine partners, along with their lessons and discipline.  HANK LEO, however, formed the basis of Luetge’s operation. His stud fees, plus his owners fees for training in halter, roping and cutting have made it possible for Luetge to achieve the “stability he feels is necessary for a poor boy to survive”. Even though “Ole Hank” is gone, Luetge still has two own sons of the stallion that he will be riding and standing in Hempstead. As Luetge states, “Ole Hank’s the one! I wouldn’t be nothing without that horse. Kept me in the business and sired a bunch of champions some people don’t know about. HE’S the legend in my book!” 

    In Memoriam  --  Hank Leo                           June 21, 1960 - November 21, 1988