Former Racing Executive Brant Latta, 60, Passes

Joseph Brant Latta, age 60, of Fort Smith, Ark., peacefully departed this life on March 15, 2021.  Brant was born on June 14, 1960, in Oklahoma City, Okla.

After earning his accounting degree from the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville, Brant went on to study racetrack management at The University of Arizona.  His horse racing career eventually brought him to Longacres Racetrack in Seattle, Wash., where he met his wife, Heather.  When Longacres closed Brant became the general manager at Yakima Meadows for two years in Yakima, Wash.  Brant went on to manage Turf Paradise in Phoenix, Ariz., and later, he became the general manager of Santa Anita Park in Arcadia, Calif.

In the last part of his racing career, he acted as chief operating officer for Magna Entertainment and worked closely with Magna’s numerous tracks around the country. Brant was longing to spend more time with his family, so in 2008, he retired from the racing industry and opened an insurance agency that he owned until his passing.

Brant was loved for his quick wit, his extraordinary sense of humor, and his devotion to living his life to the fullest.  He enjoyed playing golf with his daughter, visiting the casino with his son, spending time with his eight brothers and sisters, playing poker with his posse, and having an after-work cigar at Winston’s while visiting and laughing with his friends.  He also loved sitting outside on his porch, and anyone who was lucky enough to be invited to “Porchin’ with Brant” was guaranteed some truly unforgettable entertainment.

Brant was preceded in death by his beloved parents, Ronald and Rose Latta.  He is survived by his wife of 27 years, Heather Latta; his daughter, Claire Rose Latta, and her fiancé, Chris Eckes; his son, Brayden Latta; his sister Alicia Burks; his sister Ann Borengasser and her husband, Jim; his brother Ty Latta; his brother Kevin Latta and his wife, Kelly;  his sister Theresa Little and her husband, Tony; his sister Angela Knutzen and her husband, Steve; his brother Todd Latta and his wife, Sara; his sister Kerry Roller and her husband, Terry; many nieces and nephews, and countless friends.

A funeral Mass will be celebrated on Saturday, March 20, at 11:00 a.m. at Sacred Heart of Mary Catholic Church in Barling, Ark. Interment of ashes will be private and for family only.  Honorary pallbearers will be Ty Latta, Kevin Latta, Todd Latta, Jim Borengasser, Tony Little, Steve Knutzen, and Terry Roller.

In lieu of flowers, memorial contributions may be made to Sacred Heart of Mary Catholic Church, 1301 Frank Street, Barling, AR, 72923 or The American Stroke Association at   To leave online condolences, please visit

The post Former Racing Executive Brant Latta, 60, Passes appeared first on Horse Racing News | Paulick Report.

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