I first met Steve Stone in 1968. A friend of mine had a Bull Terrier and I fell in love with the breed. I began to learn all I could about the bully breeds. One day my friend told me his neighbor had a really nice colored Bull Terrier. The next day the neighbor and I went to see the dog.
The boy that owned the dog was not at home, but his mother was, and she took us to the back yard to see the dog. As we walked into the backyard this magnificent red and white Bull Terrier came running toward us. He was gorgeous and I fell in love with him immediately.
The boy that owned the Bull Terrier happened to be a student of Steve's at Pasadena City College. The dog was very dog aggressive and had been through four previous owners. Steve had rescued the dog from one of the previous owners. The dogs name was Bernie and the boy’s mother was not happy that her son had the dog. I gave the woman my phone number as we were leaving and asked her to call me if they decided not to keep Bernie.
About a week later I received a call from Steve. The boy and his mother had decided not to keep Bernie and he was back to Steve’s house. We arranged to meet at Steve's and I acquired Bernie (Moonshiner of La Mirada - CH Masterpiece of Monty Ayr X Red Moon Of Mingo) and a lifelong love of all things Bull Terrier.
Even though Steve's breed was Staffords, he knew as much about Bull Terriers as anyone I met in the breed. He was my mentor and taught me so much about Bull Terriers and all the bull and terrier breeds. He loaned me books and went with me to dog shows when I started showing Bernie. He was always available to answer any question I might have about Bull Terriers or dogs in general.
Since Steve was in the process of forming a Staffordshire Bull Terrier club, to begin the drive toward AKC recognition for the breed, I thought it interesting that he never tried to steer me into Staffords.
After a couple years Steve moved to Nebraska and we stayed in touch for a time and then lost track of each other. I had Bull Terriers for about twenty years and then had a period of time without them.
About five years ago I tracked Steve down through the internet and picked up our friendship via the internet and telephone. Two years ago I decided it was time for another dog. For various reasons I decided to get a Stafford. Steve was thrilled and I was working through him to acquire a puppy when he passed away.
After some research I found that Steve had a connection with the Stoutheart Staffordshire Bull Terrier kennels of Terry and Carolyn Stewart. I contacted them and told them my connection to Steve and my interest in acquiring a Stafford puppy. Last July I acquired a bitch puppy out of Rugar (Warmaster Go n Straight) and Grace (Rioghal Show Off). This meant a lot to me as I knew that Rugar was one of Steve's all time favorite Staffords and he was very high on breeding her to Grace.
We named her "Stoutheart Maid of Stone" call name Zeba, in honor of Steve. She's a lovely mahogany brindle who has all the good things that Staffords are famous for. I'm thrilled to have her and I know that Steve is looking down on us with a big smile on his face. Thank you, Steve, for Bernie and Zeba, and a lifetime love affair with all things bull terrier.
by Bud Kennedy
Buster was born in Scotland and was bred for the sole purpose of pit fighting. His owners, a couple of guys, had no interest in him other than what he could earn them in the ring. He was left every night, after the event, tied to a railing while his owners spent their ill-earned rewards in the pub, often going home and forgetting the dog who would be tied to the railing all night. A couple that we know rescued the dog by simply untying him and taking him home one evening. He was two years old when this happened. They found out his age by the talk in the pub of someone stealing the dog that was left outside.
The couple eventually emigrated to Canada bringing the dog with them.
It took approximately five years to get Buster to a position where he could be trusted to be around other dogs without showing immediate aggression. Another two years and he was able to be around other dogs and could play and run without worry of any problems arising. He shared his home with a German Shepherd cross and three Boxers belonging to family that lived on the same property, a farm in Central Alberta.
At fifteen years of age he started to show signs of slowing down to the point that they thought his days were coming to an end. It was at this time that they got a puppy from me. Morag arrived in their home and was immediately taken in by Buster. It was a new lease on life for him and he would run and play as if he was a puppy again. They were inseparable and shared everything, even their bed.
Sadly in October 2010 Buster crossed the bridge but went with the dignity and respect that is all ......... STAFFORD.
by Dave and Jane Tate