Former Salem, N.H., resident and longtime horseman, David Hicks, passed away April 24 in Hollywood, Fla., after a long illness.
David was born and raised in Rhode Island, and was the youngest of 11 children. Upon graduation from high school, Hicks enlisted in the U.S. Air Force, eventually attaining the rank of sergeant. He married Lenice J. Peever in Salem, N.H., in 1956.
David started in the horse racing industry as a teenager, first as a groom then a trainer at Scarborough Downs in Maine in 1951. He became a state steward in New Hampshire in 1969. Shortly thereafter, he also became an association and state steward at Suffolk Downs in Boston. While there, David established an apprentice program for young jockeys.
In 1981, David and his family moved from Salem, N.H., to Florida, where he became a steward at Calder, Gulfstream Park, and Hialeah. In 1995, David went north, becoming an association steward for the New York Racing Association. He retired in 2005.
David is survived by his wife of 61 years, Lenice; five children, Len Hicks and wife, Robin, David Hicks and wife, Joann, Robin (Hicks) Kalil and husband, Ron, John Hicks and wife, Rebecca, Ruth (Freeston) Hicks and husband, Wayne; 12 grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Permanently Disabled Jockey's Fund at P.O. Box 803, Elmhurst, IL 60126.
Published on  April 29, 2017