Page 20 - New Mexico Summer 2021
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                 Copper Spring’s stable of broodmares includes:
   door and buried my head and cried because I knew it was not okay.”
Karen says her family moved several times after her mom remarried.
technology. As one of the founders of Qualcomm in the mid-’80s, he was credited with developing the technology that was used in billions of cell phones.
says Karen. “And I would just say `We’re not farmers.’ She took some horseback riding lessons and really developed a passion for horses. We took her to a rodeo and when she saw the barrel
Lovethewayyoulie, Heritage Place Futuirty-G1 winner who produced foals such as
 Louisiana Champion Love The Way You Fly
“My stepdad was a bridge engineer, so we kind of traveled from city to city,” she said. “We were in Battle Creek for a while, then we were in Celine (Michigan).”
When her mother’s second marriage also ended in divorce, her mom got back together with Karen’s dad and the family left Michigan and moved to California.
Two weeks before her 18th birthday, Karen moved out of her parents’ home and rented
an apartment with some of her girlfriends. She graduated from Glendale High School in the summer of 1966 and went to work at a fast- food restaurant.
Karen’s heretofore mundane world was about to change.
“We went to an apartment house to go swimming,” recalls Karen. “I’d met this guy who lived there. When it was time to get out (of the pool), he wasn’t around. He had gone off with my clothes.”
Another young man who lived at the same complex rescued Karen from the no clothes predicament. His name was Klein Gilhousen.
“I met this nice young man who was there. He took me home so I could get some clothes. And that’s how I met my husband,” said Karen.
Klein Gilhousen would go on to become an international icon in telecommunications
Karen and Klein married less than a year after they met. He died of cancer on April 14, 2016, in Bozeman, a day after his 72nd birthday.
Klein’s inquisitive, innovative mind was the catalyst for his pursuit of a multitude
of ventures and hobbies. He flew airplanes and gliders, competed in aerobatic shows and self-taught himself to play a variety of musical instruments--from trumpet to guitar to flugal horn.
Karen says Klein was always thinking a step ahead. She recalls that one year for his birthday she had decided to get him a ride with a fighter pilot.
“He said, `That’s really nice, but what I’d really like is flying lessons,’” she said.
The Gilhousens lived in San Diego for
a good part of Klein’s career, but moved to Bozeman in 1991, following the tragic deaths of their daughter April and toddler grandson Bryan. April’s infant daughter, Aspen, survived the tragedy and was adopted by the Gilhousens.
The move to Montana would eventually bring Lisa and Brian into the picture. And with some persistence from Aspen, the Gilhousens would gradually become horse owners.
“My daughter (Aspen) was six or seven and kept saying she wanted to have a farm,”
racers she said, `That’s what I want to do.’
“So, we started looking for horses that were
safe. It was hard to find the kind of horses
we wanted, so we decided we would do some breeding ourselves and we kind of evolved that way,” says Karen.
One action triggered another. Karen and Klein built an indoor arena so Aspen could ride year-round.
“I didn’t set out to do this stuff, but as the need arose, I met it and it evolved,” says Karen. That evolution took Karen to Moore, Texas,
for a visit to Lisa and Brian’s farm. She was instantly sold on how they did things and in 2008 started sending them some of her barrel horses to train.
“I was impressed with what they had built there and how well they did it,” she says. “They’re like workaholics. I asked them if they would come and work for us.”
And now that they’re working together in New Mexico, Karen’s admiration for Lisa and Brian continues to grow.
“They are the hardest working people I’ve ever met,” says Karen. “They’re willing to go the extra mile. They try to take care of me, and the ranch, and they feel a certain ownership of it.”
Brian says the partnership works because they have the same goals.
 “They are the hardest working people I’ve ever met. They’re willing
 to go the extra mile. They try to take care of me, and the ranch, and they feel a certain ownership of it.” – Karen Gilhousen
   18 New Mexico Horse Breeder

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