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Angelfields

Mrs. Nancy Martin 'Ayr'
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In the fall of 1973, the brand new Labrador Retriever Club of the Potomac put on its first Match in Maryland and what a beginning it was - with Mrs. Gwen Broadley as judge!
 
Many people knew of the Sandylands kennel through a few that had been brought to America by Jim and Helen Warwick, Mrs. Grace Lambert and others.  Enthusiasts came from far and wide - it was a mighty big turnout.
 
The baby bitch class had an entry of 19, and I was so thrilled to place first with my chocolate puppy, Fudge.  I'll never forget Gwen's comment, "I'm not terribly fond of chocolates you know, but this one is a gumdrop!"  The dear lady wasn't aware that Fudge was Sandylands bred on both sides.
 
John and I visited her each time we were in England and in 1977, Kendall Herr, margaret Crothers and I spent a day or two at Sandylands.  At the time, Gwen had a litter by Ch. Sandylands Mark out of Sh. Ch. Sandylands Longley Come Rain, and I was able to choose one of the black females.  Since she and Margaret Clayton were coming to Pennsylvania to judge later in the summer, Gwen agreed to bring little Sandylands Morningcloud with her on the plane.  How very fortunate for me!  My dear 'Cloudy' was a wonderful house pet, a super retriever and a very special champion.

Indeed I'd like to know too the secret of Gwen's long success.  She had experience in the early days with several other breeds, and she once said that judging other breeds gave her a well rounded vision of Labs, and that it helped to prevent nit-picking or fault judging of Labs.  I think she just had a great eye for a good dog, and was true to a certain type which she felt to be correct.
 
Gwen and I were friends for all these years and I have such warm memories of sitting by her fire with a glass of sherry or going to the 'Buther's Arms' for lunch or to her local pub.  I feel so lucky to have known her and I'll miss her very much indeed.

Remembering Gwen...