Clark Beckstead at a 1994 AAEP/AFA joint clinic at N.C. State’s College of Veterinary Medicine.

Clark B. Beckstead, farrier for 35 years died suddenly, March 14, 2011 just as he started to shoe his fourth horse of the morning.   Clark graduated in 1966 from Bingham High School in Utah, was a member of Future Farmers of America, and achieved the rank of Eagle Scout.  Clark also proudly served our country in the armed forces by enlisting in the U.S. Navy and serving a tour of duty during the Vietnam War. Clark helped many, many people, fellow farriers, and especially horses. His skill was unparalleled in the quality and quantity of his work. Besides being the most sought after farrier in Santa Barbara he worked throughout southern California and even onto Japan and Australia on many foot problems.   Clark was highly involved with many continuing education programs as a participant and helper.  He spent years at the Bluegrass Laminitis Symposium, lectured at many state and local Farrier organizations and in 1996 and 1997 was a farrier for the Japanese Olympic Team. 

He was a contributor to the book Equine Podiatry. He was willing to help many veterinarians and farriers as well as their owners. 

He was a pillar of the Santa Barbara horse community being a 30 year sponsor of the Old Spanish Days Fiesta Rodeo, Santa Barbara Riding Club and the volunteer farrier for the Santa Cruz Island horses.  One of his most notable community feats was being instrumental in the evacuation of hundreds of horses, saving their lives, and helping to found the Santa Barbara Equine Evacuation group during the 1990 Painted Cave Fire.

Clark was passionate about his work and a very proud and fun loving man.  He is survived by his ever present best supporter and wife of 22 years, Karen Beckstead and three children. 

“Clark was a gracious and accomplished gentleman who approached the world with an infectious and contagious childlike enthusiasm. Clark Beckstead was one-of-a-kind whose absence leaves a hole in the universe”.  (from the Deseret News, Utah) A celebration of Clark’s life will be held at the Santa Barbara Carriage Museum on Sunday March 27, 2011 from noon to 4 PM.  In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Clark Beckstead Memorial Fund at any Santa Barbara Bank & Trust branch.