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A gentle man and a gentleman

I remember many years ago when I ventured into the world of dog shows there I stood, knees knocking and lead shaking, with a young dog on the end looking just as terrified as I was, then a hand touched my shoulder and a voice said "this is your first show isn't it" I turned very slowly and looked Terry straight in the eyes, not knowing who he was and blurted yes and probably my last!

Twenty years later I had the honour of exhibiting under him at Bournemouth, his words to me then were I see we have stopped shaking, I could not believe he had remembered. Terry Thorn was and will always be the greatest judge this country has ever had always happy to give advice always kind to both two and four legged friends in and out of the show ring.

We as a nation have lost a true gentleman, a true professional, the world has lost its greatest Judge, Heaven has gained the best. God bless Zena and the family at this saddest of times.

From all at Chandera

Mr Terry Thorn was a higly respected judge in Finland. He judged often at our major shows and also breed club shows. His way to judge dogs and handle exhibitors was one of a kind - he will be missed a lot.

Our sincere condolecences to Zena and all the family.

Olli Rahi,
Chief Excecutive Officer
on behalf of The Finnish Kennel Club

It was always a pleasure to enter my Lowchens under Terry Thorn. He was such a knowledgeable and very fair judge. He understood the importance of producing an informative critique and always hit the nail on the head when assessing exhibits.

Dogdom has lost such a lovely man of great stature and a real gentleman to boot.
Our thoughts go out to his wife and family at this very sad time.

Sandy Steward

Terry will be deeply missed by so many of us. He rose to the very top in dogs, and was both respected and popular. He was always very modest about his success as a breeder and exhibitor. He was hugely successful, and started many others on their way with dogs he had bred.
As a judge he was number one in the UK and in great demand all over the world. He sat on many Kennel Club committees, chaired the Judges and then Crufts sub-committees, was a long standing member of the Windsor team, and helped so many other societies over the years. He was such a great ambassador for British dogs abroad.

Terry always had time for everyone. Walking around a show with Terry was amazing, everyone knew him and he was ready to listen to problems and offer suggestions. He was full of fun, and was a great player of practical jokes. As a judge he was efficient, always finished in good time, and never predictable. I wonder how many people he awarded a first CC to?

Terry encouraged, advised and helped so many of us with our judging. He tried to pull people up the ladder. I personally owe so much to him. He leaves a huge gap in the dog scene, but also a huge legacy.

Jeff Horswell

The world of dogs has lost a wonderful judge.

I was lucky to show under Terry many times but the last two will stay as a very clear picture in my head. He was a great “dog person” but also very nice and fun to show under. Always with a nice remark and a great smile. The very last time was in Mouscron, Belgium, feb. 2007 and shortly thereafter I heard that he had cancelled his judging appointments in Europe the rest of the year.
My thoughts go to his family.

Mette Sørum

Sincerest condolences to Zena and Terry's closest relatives and friends. Terry was a true gentleman, not only a credit to our hobby but a man of tremendous value to dogdom in general. A deservedly respected and always considerate judge whose like may never be seen again.

May he rest in peace and may some comfort be brought to those closest to Terry that he was and will always remain a highly respected and admired individual whose passing is genuinely mourned world wide.

Teri Burke

I was deeply saddened to learn of the death of Terry Thorn. Those of us who have been privileged to know him have been missing his presence on the show scene for some time now due to his long battle with cancer. With the news of his death comes the realisation of just how big a gap in the dog world this larger than life personality has left, both in this country and overseas.

Terry was held, justifiably, in high regard world wide for his wealth of knowledge of the dog game and his professionalism as a judge. He was also well known as an accomplished practical joker with a wicked sense of humour. Magnanimous by nature, he was intensely loyal to his friends and numerous people, myself included, have reason to thank Terry for his advice and encouragement over the years. As he said himself, “it's nice to be able to help people”.

I first met Terry in the early 70's when I began showing Salukis and at a time when he was enjoying huge success as a breeder and exhibitor. We would often reminisce with some amusement on these early days. Following his considerable achievements in the breed, he turned his attention to developing a career in judging and having gone to the top in that sphere he subsequently made a huge contribution to the development of the show scene in this country through his work on the various Kennel Club Committees on which he served, thus helping to ensure that others would derive similar pleasure from their dog interests as he himself had enjoyed.

He judged regularly at both the Scottish Kennel Club shows, often together with Zena. We'll miss his cheery smile and his chat, invariably with news of his latest overseas appointments, the dogs he'd judged and the people he'd met. He had a great rapport with all who met him and will long be remembered for his great enthusiasm and passionate interest in dogs and horses.
My late husband Gus and I were privileged to be his friends. My sincere condolences go to Zena and the members of his family, both personally and on behalf of the committee, members and staff of the Scottish Kennel Club.

Anne Macdonald

The world is a sadder place without the true gentleman that Terry was, his kind are so few and far between, he will always be remembered by his lovely smile and helpful ways.

Sandie Tadd

You will never be forgotten.... always such a happy judge, such a pleasure to show my dogs under you and you always said hello and had time to chat. R.I.P Terry. My thoughts are with your lovely wife Zena & your family

Sharon Sutherland -
Witchgait Shar Pei

I live in France, where Terry Thorn was a popular judge. His excellent command of French meant that his critiques were well written and displayed a thorough knowledge of whichever breed he judged. His memory for names of dogs and people was prodigious, as was his sound knowledge of the finer points of so many breeds.

Always courteous and dignified, but with a keen sense of humour, he will indeed be sorely missed.

Jane Naylor

So very sorry to hear about his death, I had a very high regard for his judging, he certainly knew a good dog.

He will be sadly missed, condolences to Zena and family.

Margaret Hamilton - Margham Dandie Dinmonts

Having judged a number of times both in England and overseas with Terry, I can say he was one of England’s greatest ambassadors in the world of dogs.

Always the perfect gentleman with a deep interest and knowledge of all breeds, he had that rare ability to put everyone at ease, be they established or new exhibitors. He will be remembered with affection wherever dog shows are held.

May he rest in peace.

Barry Makepeace

It was always a highlight to meet Terry somewere around this world at a dog show. I would have travelled to the end of the world to show my dogs under him.

I feel privileged to have known him personally.

Conny Verelst-Loest
OES and Bearded Collie, Belgium

It was with sadness I heard of the passing of Terry Thorn. Whilst there is some consolation in him being relieved of his suffering, it is with his family that my thoughts are with at this sad time.
His passing will leave a void both as a man, and for his knowledge and expertise. He epitomised all that was good about the canine world and was a true ambassador of the UK dog world, wherever he travelled.

There are two words often overused these days but Terry Thorn was both a gentleman and a true Dogman, he will be missed by all who knew or met him.

Nigel Price

What a gentleman, he encouraged us greatly when he judged in Cardiff and I have always valued his judgement.

He will be sadly missed. Thinking of all the family.

Liz & Gordon Davies -
Cenninpedr Great Danes

It is indeed a very sad time for the canine world. Terry was an absolute gentleman, his attitude toward exhibitors and their dogs exemplary.

He judged the Southern English Springer Spaniel open show with relish, we all felt he wanted to be there and he thouroughly enjoyed his day. May I on behalf of the SESSS officers, committee and members send sincere condolences to Zena and the family at this terribly sad time.

RIP Terry.
Graham Osborne
Chairman SESSS

Terry was one of my all time favourite judges, especially if I was bringing out a new puppy - so kind and gentle with the babies and always so professional in the ring.

Sue Bagnall - Soojon Boxers & Pugs

In the past I have often shown my dogs under Mr Thorn and always found him a true gentleman. I used to have Collies under the prefix Cervine, but now I’m in France breeding Australian Shepherds. He will be greatly missed, condolences to his family.

Mavis Payne

I am so sad to hear the news. My last memory of Terry was when we took him to the Seafood Restaurant in Bangkok and I have never seen anyone eat and enjoy so much in one sitting. Hope they have plenty of shellfish in Heaven!

My condolences Zena.

Jackie Perry - Phuket, Thailand

The dog world is a sadder place with Terry Thorn's passing, a kind and gentle judge and a gentleman, my thoughts are with his family at this sad time.

Pat Fordyce-Gale

Very sad to hear the news.Terry was a very special man who was loved and admired by so many people.

To watch him judge dogs was just amazing, every dog was given the same special treatment and gone over with superb perfection.The world of dogs has lost a very special man.We all will miss you Terry.

Our thoughts go out to Zena and family.

Angie Hughes

Terry Thorn, a really wonderful man, so kind, so helpful, so knowledgeable, the world of dogs will miss this remarkable and kindly man. Always a smile and wonderful with puppies. Our lives have been the richer for knowing him.

Sympathy to Zena and family.

Patricia and Maurice Endersby

Sad day for the dog world to lose such a lovely person as Terry Thorn, I always liked him to judge my puppies on their first outing if possible, as he was so gentle and kind with a sometimes unruly youngster.

Our thoughts go to his family at this time, Terry will be missed by everyone that ever met him.

Sue & Bill Turner

The world of dogs will certainly miss Terry. A true gentleman who always acknowledged you with a smile.

I will always be truely thankful to Terry for giving my girl her first CC and setting her on the road to gain her title, which she did.

He will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with Zena.

David & Kath Robson - Robricci Weimaraners

Certainly the end of an era, the passing of a rare gem from the world of dogs, a gentleman who made his exhibitors feel special and equal, he took every judging appointment professionally from BIS at crufts to breed classes at an open show. He was only interested in, 'the dog at the end of the lead' and was always consistant with his decisions - if he liked your dog as a youngster he would like them as an adult.

He didn't follow trends and if you were lucky enough to be judged by him in the big ring, you knew it would be 'an equal playing field' and all would be judged on their merits on the day.
I will miss his expertise, his integrity and his smile.

Jean Harrison - Paradise Gordon Setters

What a great man to lose and a sad day for all of us. A true gentleman, God Bless Terry, we will meet again some day.

Deepest sympathy to Zena and family.

Julie Moss and all at Kopykats

I met Terry many years ago, he was a gentle and very knowelegable dog man. He made up my first Champion who he loved very much.

We will not see the likes of him again. The last time was in Brussels and he must have been ill then, but he was his usual, happy and caring self.

I send my sympathy to his wife Zena and his family.

Pat Heys

A true gentleman, he treated exhibitors with the respect they deserve, unlike a lot that we have after paying so much for entries. It's a real shame.

Mrs R. Trendle

I was so sorry to hear the sad news about Terry. He was one of the old school - a dog man through and through. He was also a real gentleman, not something you see too often these days. He will be sadly missed. There are so few judges with his knowledge and understanding, we can’t afford to lose any.

I have shown under him many, many times over the years, and he was always kind to puppies, and polite and gracious to handlers even if they were not a 'face'. I will miss him around the shows. He was a person of principle and standing.

God Bless and Rest in Peace Terry.

Trisha Dean - Asterel Estrela Mountian Dogs

One of the last times I ‘worked’ with Terry was at the World Show in Poland in November 2006. We were at a press conference for the Eukanuba World Challenge with some of his counterparts on the European stage. Terry was representing Crufts and the Kennel Club.

Terry was great to interview at such an event because he always had that natural, easy way about him. I attended many shows with him both in the UK and overseas, but did not attend as many as he did.... we often joked about how many air miles he had collected!
You always had to be careful of any practical jokes as well.... as Bob Dyke will testify with the ‘Mickey Mouse’ watch escapade one year at Crufts.

A great horseracing man as well, and OUR DOGS were the proud sponsors of Terry’s racing colours... not that we ever had a winning tip off him!

The world will be a poorer place without Terry.

OUR DOGS sends condolences to Zena and all of Terry’s family at this sad time.

Vince Hogan -
Managing Director

We will never see the likes of Terry Thorn again in this country.

Not only has our sport lost one of its champions, we have lost someone who was very much in tune with exhibitors. Terry had time for everyone, regardless of their status, and he could be relied upon for sound advice based on his wealth of experience in various fields.

We benefitted from the support offered by him when he gave freely of his time and expertise on an important issue involving us. He may have gone, but he certainly will not be forgotten.
Stuart Band & Cindy McCarthy

Terry Thorn was always someone who people were happy to give their entry to because they knew he would always be kind, polite and have time for people and their dogs. The world of dog showing will not be the same as he and more people like him leave it.

With sympathy to his nearest and dearest.

Carole Bell

Terry Thorn was a "gentleman" right down to the letter. Thank you Terry for your words of encouragement in the past.

A great loss to one and all.

Tracy Hales - Sandvika

Terry was a real gentleman and he will be sadly missed He was friendly to everyone whether they were an ordinary exhibitor or a top judge. He always remembered people and when I saw him at shows he always acknowledged that I was there no matter who he was with at the time.

He also remembered dogs he had judged. Many years ago he gave a GWP bitch, at her first show, best puppy in breed at GBAS. About three or four years later he was judging at SKC and the bitch was entered and he said to the owner lets see if she can still move as she did as a pup. The owner works the dogs and seldom shows so he would not have seen her or the bitch at shows. What an amazing talent that he could recognise the bitch after all that time.

I will miss seeing him around the shows and the world of dogs will be a sadder place without him. There will be lots of stories told about him and they will all be nice as everyone respected and admired him.

My condolences to his family. RIP Terry.

Pat Dempster