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RIP Vanessa   HRN Horse-Races.Net General Discussions

Started Mar-20 by TexSquared; 484 views.

From: TexSquared


Sadly we must announce the passing of our longtime photographer and personal friend Vanessa Ng.  She was on this forum for a few years under the name SwaleSmarty.  

Although Swale and Smarty Jones were two of her favorite horses, I think after those two as well as Ouija Board, Curlin, and Rachel Alexandra, clearly American Pharoah was her #1.

We posted the following page with some candid photos of her; those who knew her know she HATED being photographed and would turn away if you tried to aim a camera/phone at her. Of those pics only the pic of her with AP was intentional.  We weren't with her that day; she handed her camera off to somebody nearby to capture the moment, which I believe was the happiest she ever was.

Wherever she is I hope she is taking pictures of Secretariat, Ruffian, John Henry, Cigar, Barbaro... and talking racing with our old friend Ken Finch who (I recently found out) died about a year ago.

SameSteve G

From: SameSteve G


A wonderful tribute that is full of love and respect for Vanessa.  You and Cindy are all class all the way.  Vanessa was gifted at her work and it is, indeed, a comfort to think of her happily doing what she loves in another dimension.


From: princeofdoc


Condolences for your friend, Tex....


From: DogsUpWired


I remember your posts of her work here.

She lived a life most dream of in a compassionate way.


From: Gerh


A very talented lady.She will be sorely missed.


From: smartyslew


A beautiful tribute to Someone who is Special and my condolence for your long time friend, Tex.


From: pianot


Very sorry for the loss.


From: Wintertrian


Such sad news, but I hope for her what you have already wished.   She spent her life doing what she loves, and got to travel the world taking photos of the horses she loved so much.  A life well lived, though tragically, cut short.  I love the photo of her with American Pharoah.  She is beaming.  I will miss seeing her at Oaklawn,  out there in her black outfit, with that huge behemoth of a camera lens.   Knowing how much you guys loved her I'm sure was part of the magic. 

Thank you for the link to her FB.   


From: twoshots


So sorry for your loss and for those close to her. RIP Vanessa. I fondly remember your posting here, and enjoyed many of your photos.

In reply toRe: msg 9

From: TexSquared



We found out today that Vanessa's funeral will be on Tuesday in Ithaca, New York.  As some of you may have known, after living in various places growing up (she was born in New York but also lived in Arizona, California, Hong Kong, maybe Singapore...she rarely spoke of her past so I hope I got those right) Vanessa was a Cornell graduate who worked several jobs at the university as well as elsewhere in the city of Ithaca, so it's fitting that she have her service and be buried there.  

It's still hard for me to believe she's gone.