Bedford, IA — Gail D. Conte, 65, died Sept. 17, 2020.
Born April 14, 1955, Mrs. Conte was the first daughter of Vic and Nola Bloomfield. Her father, a career army man, received an assignment to West Point Military Academy and Mrs. Conte attended Highland Falls High School. During her junior and senior year, she enrolled at Boces Standardbred School at Historic Track in Goshen, N.Y.
After graduation, Mrs. Conte went to work for Hall of Famer John Patterson Sr. at Monticello Raceway. She worked for him not only at Monticello, but also at Roosevelt Raceway and in Dalton, Ga.
In 1978, she married Michael Conte and continued working at Roosevelt Raceway for Angelo Anobile until the track closed in 1988. She then attended Long Island School of Dog Grooming.
Mr. and Mrs. Conte moved to Yorktown, Iowa, in 1989, to be closer to her parents. As an Iowa native, Clarinda, Iowa, was always her home.
She opened a successful dog grooming business in Clarinda. Mrs. Conte also helped start the Southwest Iowa Humane Society in 1991 and was always ready to support fund raising for the shelter dogs and cats. In 2001, she went to work for NSK-AKS, retiring in 2017.
During their time in Yorktown, Mr. and Mrs. Conte built up their breeding and racing stock. They raced the Iowa Fair Circuit for 30 years. Some of the horses that have been bred or owned by Mrs. Conte include Hap Bob Bobby, Krissy Brit S, Military Brat, Military Stratcom, Foxy Jazz, No Money Fun, J R Jazz, Not Thinking, Cyclone Maximus and her favorite, Pugwash. Mr. and Mrs. Conte claimed Pugwash in 1979 on her recommendation, thus starting their journey into Standardbred ownership.
Mrs. Conte is survived by her husband of 42 years, Mike; and sister, Kim.
Services are set for Monday (Sept. 21) at Cummings Family Funeral Home, Bedford, Ia.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Standardbred Retirement Foundation.