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Norman McClurg, 83, dies
Wednesday, November 30, 2016 - from the USTA Communications Department

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Columbus, OH --- Norman McClurg, 83, who owned, bred and trained Standardbreds at race tracks in Ohio, Canada and the eastern United States, died Nov. 12, 2016, in the Franciscan Care Center, Sylvania.

He was born Aug. 6, 1933, to Fay and Gale McClurg. Mr. McClurg graduated from DeVilbiss High School and the University of Toledo. He was a lifelong member of Pilgrim Church.

Mr. McClurg was stricken by polio as a child and used crutches and later a wheelchair to get around. However, he insisted that he didn't want the disability to define his life.

A lifelong interest in Standardbreds and harness racing began while he was a teenager growing up in West Toledo. He worked in his family's Newcomb-McClurg Co. until 1976 when the vehicle repair business was sold.

He then pursued training horses full-time. Known in horse racing circles as "Toledo Red," Mr. McClurg owned and trained more than a dozen pacers and trotters until about 2000 and competed at Toledo's Raceway Park and race tracks in Windsor, Ont., Chicago and the Meadowlands in New Jersey. He also traveled the county fair circuit in Ohio throughout the summer to watch horses compete in races.

His resume in the industry included writing a monthly column in the Hoosier Horse Review and being employed as assistant race secretary at Roosevelt Raceway in Long Island, N.Y., for two years.

Mr. McClurg later sold laser therapy equipment for treating injured horses and energy-related equine supplements.

Memorial contributions may be made to Pilgrim Church ( or the Christian Harness Horseman's Association (

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