Our Loss – Carol Trimmer

It is with deep sadness that NRHA has learned that Hall of Fame Inductee and former staff member, Carol Trimmer, has passed away. Carol was such a well loved and respected member of the reining horse community and will be deeply missed. We send our condolences to her husband Paul and the rest of the family.

Visitation will be from 5:00-8:00 pm on Monday, April 22, at Abernathy Aaron Funeral Home (201 N Hickory St in Crescent, OK).

Funeral service will be held at 11:00 am on Tuesday, April 23,  at First Baptist Church (220 S Grand in Crescent, OK).

Graveside service to follow.

Carol’s family is requesting that, if desired, memorial gifts be made to the Reining Horse Foundation.

Full obituary:

Ruby Carol Trimmer
Crescent, Oklahoma
March 13, 1949 – April 16, 2019

Ruby Carol Trimmer, daughter of Adrie Lloyd Givens and Carol Joanne Alldredge-Givens, departed this world on April 16, 2019 in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma. Born in Bloomington, Illinois, Trimmer and her husband Paul Trimmer made their home in Crescent, Oklahoma.

A loving wife, mother, grandmother, sister, aunt, and cherished friend, Trimmer will be more than missed by everyone who had the pleasure of knowing her. Throughout her life, Trimmer went out of her way to make those around her feel like part of her family, and she will forever hold a special place in the hearts of many.

Trimmer developed a love for horses early in her life. Her father, Lloyd Givens, trained Saddlebreds, and Trimmer grew up riding Saddlebreds, hunters, and jumpers. When she met her husband Paul, she became interested in American Quarter Horses. Before their marriage in 1967, Paul showed reining horses in AQHA events, even before the formation of the National Reining Horse Association—the association in which Trimmer later became a major centerpiece.

The couple’s shared love of horses ensured they would always be a part of the equine realm. While Paul served in the United States Air Force, stationed in Idaho, they owned one Quarter Horse named Hay Valley Ruth. When Paul was discharged from the Air Force, they relocated to Paul’s hometown of Dennison, Ohio, with eight horses in tow. After the birth of their son Paul Lloyd Trimmer, the family found a new home in Fresno, Ohio, that better suited their growing needs.

The Trimmer’s new facility was conveniently located near Columbus, Ohio, where they often showed their horses at events including the All American Quarter Horse Congress. For more than 15 years, Trimmer began to foster her love of writing while working in the Congress press room. In 1993, one of Trimmer’s articles, which she titled “The 1993 Congress Formula,” was published in the NRHA Reiner magazine. This piece covering the Congress Reining Futurity was only the beginning of Trimmer’s enduring mark on the NRHA Reiner.

Three years later, Trimmer’s future daughter-in-law, Susie Reidenbach, who was working at the NRHA office in Coshocton, Ohio, told Trimmer they needed some extra help. Without hesitation, Trimmer took on a part time position, while still working her full-time job in the logistics department at Colgate-Palmolive.

In 1998, as NRHA prepared to relocate to Oklahoma City, Trimmer did not want to leave her family and horse farm in Ohio. However, the current NRHA Director Dan Wall persisted in asking her to stay with the association. Eventually, everything fell into place for the Trimmers to move. Paul Lloyd, who was a roper, wanted to be in Oklahoma close to his friends, so when NRHA offered Susie a job, the two families committed to take their 24 horses to Oklahoma.

Frank Costantini, who was president of NRHA at the time, recalls the instrumental role Trimmer played in making NRHA’s relocation an easy transition. “Not very many of the people that were involved with the office when we were still in Ohio planned to move with us to Oklahoma City. Trimmer and Susie were some of the few,” Costantini said.

Once settled in Oklahoma City, Trimmer took on a new role as NRHA Sire & Dam Coordinator and also served as staff liaison for the Hall of Fame Committee. This position came naturally to Trimmer, who found her passion in helping NRHA ensure the history of the association, its people, and their horses were never forgotten.

As the association continued to grow, so did the NRHA Reiner magazine—and that growth brought some growing pains. When the need arose for in-house assistance with the magazine, Trimmer’s experience writing articles and press releases in the Congress press room made her a perfect fit to help. However, the Sire & Dam Program and the NRHA Reiner were both full-time jobs, and Trimmer had to make a choice. In June of 2000, that choice allowed her to become the Associate Editor of the NRHA Reiner.

People quickly began to notice Trimmer’s dedication to fact-checking, making sure the magazine included only accurate information, and publishing a top-quality product. By March 2001, Trimmer was named the NRHA Reiner Production Coordinator. In January 2003, she shifted into the role of Managing Editor, and by June of the same year, Trimmer took on the position of Senior Director of Publications.

“Carol has that big-picture perspective and the sense of history that nobody else can bring to the table because of her years and experience with the association,” said Rick Weaver, past president of the NRHA and fellow Hall of Fame inductee. “For anybody that has ever sat in on a meeting with her, there is never a question about her integrity. Her intentions are always to better the association, especially the NRHA Reiner magazine.”

That same integrity and dedication helped the NRHA Reiner become an award-winning publication under Trimmer’s guidance. She wanted people outside NRHA to know about NRHA’s quality magazine, so she began submitting the NRHA Reiner to the American Horse Publications annual equine media competition. Trimmer’s efforts paid off, and the NRHA Reiner brought home plenty of awards to demonstrate the quality of work found within its covers.

Many recall Trimmer saying: “Nobody will ever do a job and not make mistakes, but I would like to be remembered in this industry as someone who took a lot of pride in the product we put out, the association, and the people.” Her love for NRHA and her pride in the NRHA Reiner showed in her staff’s close relationship and their dedication to the magazine’s excellence.

Amidst Trimmer’s great success with NRHA, the Trimmers suffered a devastating loss in 2006 when their son passed away unexpectedly at the young age of 33. Although nothing could possibly replace the loss of her child, Trimmer found solace in her NRHA family who supported her through the trying situation. This only affirmed Trimmer’s firm belief that NRHA functions like a family, and the help she received from fellow staff and NRHA members made a major impact on the Trimmers.

In 2013, Trimmer was inducted into the NRHA Hall of Fame. She was quoted as saying she was “absolutely flabbergasted” to learn of the news and cherished the chance to join so many of the people she looked up to in the NRHA Hall of Fame.

Rick Weaver, who was also a 2013 Hall of Fame Inductee, remains honored to have been inducted alongside Trimmer. “I can’t think of very many people that I would rather share the stage with other than Carol. She is such a good person, and she lives and breathes the NRHA,” he said. “She is just so much about her job and the NRHA; I think she is truly one of the most unselfish people that you will ever meet. She is just incredible that way.”

Trimmer is survived by her loving husband of 51 years; daughter-in-law Susie Reidenbach Eveland and husband Jeff; three grandchildren, Lincoln, Garret, and Anna Trimmer; her sister, Connie Murray; and her nephew and niece, David Murray and Heather Wojtkiewicz. She was preceded in death by her son, Paul Lloyd Trimmer.

Everyone who had the pleasure of knowing Trimmer recognized her vibrant soul and her passion for life and the many things she loved. She loved her dogs, Max and Simon, who never left her side, and was an avid fan of professional bull riding and NASCAR.

Trimmer’s passing leaves many with tears in their eyes, pain in their hearts, and a void in their souls, and she will undoubtedly continue to be loved by many around the world. To an NRHA superstar who has turned in her plates, those left behind wish only the best as she spins her way into heaven. Until we meet again!