Saying goodbye to one of the Greatest Trick Horses of her time

COYLE, Okla. (KFOR) – Never mind supper.

Johnny Blasier still doesn’t feel much like eating only days after the passing of his best friend and show business partner.

A makeshift shrine to her is set up on the table and kitchen counter.

“I miss her.” he laments. “She was my buddy.”

ICE was her name, and she was special.

The last new year’s babies: A longtime Children’s Hospital maternity nurse retires

“She took you a lot of places?” we asked.

“Oh yeah,” he nods. “Nashville, Hollywood three times.”

We first met ICE as a curious 2-year-old mare in 1994.

Johnny had started noticing her inquisitive and mischievous nature when she was a colt.

“She got to where she knew what I wanted,” he recalls. “She would pick it up so quick you wouldn’t believe it.”

ICE, recalls Blasier, seemed to have no limit to what she could understand and learn.

Her long list of tricks included sitting like a dog and holding a fishing pole in her mouth, dancing, playing guitar and harmonica, and kicking a football.

After our story aired, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno called quickly, followed by a string of variety and morning news shows.

“You got her famous,” Blasier smiles. “You got her started.”

Newspapers printed features, magazines too.

ICE was known for a time as the world’s smartest horse, and she could prove it in a number of different ways.

The only thing you couldn’t do was ride her.

Basier insists, “She never was broke to ride.”

Every stitch carries a story in these Memory Bears

They had a great run, but ICE slowed with age.

She and Johnny still worked together.

ICE learned to paint.

Johnny still has a collection of her work on canvas and a collection of western shirts.

He wasn’t ready to lose her at 32.

Blasier insists he wouldn’t have been ready had she lived to 50.

He admits, “It hurts. I go to bed thinking about it. When I wake up, I look to where I have her buried.”

ICE’s final resting place sits near where she was born.

When Johnny goes, and image of ICE is already etched on his tombstone.

In all the world, Johnny still wonders at the miracle of her birth and their partnership.

Miss it?

Sure.

“Yes sir,” he smiles. “I wish I could have her longer.”

But the memories remain.

Johnny and his wife, Cheryl, are planning to place a memorial to ICE, including a life size statue, at her gravesite on their property.

Great State is sponsored by Oklahoma Proton Center

Follow Galen’s Great State adventures on social media!

For the latest news, weather, sports, and streaming video, head to KFOR.com Oklahoma City.