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Obituary - Harrell E. Brawner

Harrell Eldridge Brawner, Sr. passed away peacefully in Wynne, Arkansas, on Thursday, June 4, 2015, at the age of 86. He was preceded in death by his wife Ouida Brawner; parents, Claude E. Brawner, Sr. and Ada McElroy Brawner; brothers, Amos Brawner, Sr. and Claude Brawner, Jr.; sister, Mary Brawner Wallin; and son, Lawson Brawner.

Harrell was born on March 19, 1929, in the Rolfe community west of Wynne, AR. He was an active youngster and enjoyed school at Rolfe Elementary. After the family moved to Wynne, he worked in the family business, Brawner Livestock Auction Company, while attending school in Wynne. He played all sports at Wynne High School and was quarterback of the Yellowjacket Football team, leading the Yellowjackets to victory in the East AR Championship in 1945.

After attending college, he joined the Army during the Korean Conflict. When his Army tour ended, he returned to Wynne and contracted with Shelter Insurance (formerly M.F.A. Insurance Company) in 1953 and received the company’s highest honor in 1973 as their Agent of the Year. He also attended auctioneer school and became a licensed auctioneer.

Harrell married Ouida on December 6, 1953, and they had two sons, Eldridge and Lawson.

In 1976, Harrell purchased Big Valley Trailer Mfg. Company, which manufactured custom horse trailers. His custom-built horse trailers were sold all over the United States.

Harrell bought his first walking horse in 1972 while attending the Tennessee Walking Horse National Celebration. His first horse to win a World Championship was “Delight’s Crackerjack” in 1976. In 1995, Harrell had the honor of being inducted into The Celebration Hall of Fame along with his “Delight’s Mr. Ebony” winning a World Championship with Eldridge at the whip. Harrell’s years of involvement with the Tennessee walking horse industry culminated with his “Cash For Keeps” being crowned as the breed’s World Grand Champion in 2000.

Harrell was elected to the Board of the Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders’ and Exhibitors’ Association and won that association’s highest honor, the Reese L. Smith, Jr. Distinguished Service Award, in 1998.

Harrell retired from the business world in 2002. He spent his life helping others, both spiritually and financially, and has contributed greatly to the Wynne and Cross County areas. He was named Cross County Citizen of the Year in 1990.

Harrell is survived by one son, Eldridge Brawner; sister, Onalee Brawner and brother, Rex Brawner; grandchildren, Harrell III, Lyle, Beau, Madison, Logan, and Kayln and 8 great grandchildren. Harrell will forever be known for his love of God and for his gracious and giving spirit.

Visitation was held Saturday, June 6, 2015 at Kernodle Funeral Home, from 11 AM until 1 PM at Kernodle Funeral Home Chapel. A graveside service will follow visitation at Crosslawn Cemetery at 1 PM.

Memorials may be sent to First United Methodist Church, 800 N. Falls Blvd, Wynne, AR; Tennessee Walking Horse Breeders’ and Exhibitors’ Assoc., 250 N. Ellington Pkwy., Lewisburg, TN 37091; Christian Fellowship Church, P.O. Box 487, Wynne, AR.

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