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Gaines Dog Food Founder Dies At 88

January 2, 1986 GMT

WINTER PARK, Fla. (AP) _ Clarence Francis Gaines, founder of the Gaines Dog Food Co. and a well- known horseman and Florida developer, has died at his home. He was 88.

Gaines, who died Tuesday, founded the company in 1928, introducing a complete dog meal product that the New York Herald Tribune said revolutionized the industry. In 1943, General Foods bought the firm.

Gaines said he perfected the product for his own dogs.

″They were eating me out of house and home and not doing any good either,″ Gaines once said.

A native of Sherburne, N.Y., Gaines had visited Orlando since 1921 with his father, a poultry and feed businessman who also bred and raced horses.

In 1944, Gaines founded the Gainesway Farm near Lexington, Ky., making it among the world’s ranking trotting-horse breeding farms. After he sold the farm in 1955, his Gainesway trotters and their descendants set records and won awards in America and Europe.

Gaines and his late wife, Amelia, began wintering in Winter Park in 1948.

The Horsemen’s magazine Man of the Year in 1982, Gaines received the Harness Tracks of America Messenger Award in 1985 for distinguished contributions and long service to the sport of harness racing. A director emeritus of the Lexington Trots Association, he was a founder of the Vernon Downs Racetrack in Vernon, N.Y.

Besides horses and dogs, Gaines had extensive real estate holdings in Central Florida.

He developed the Gainesway Street subdivision on Lake Maitland and was a partner in the Gainesway, Silver Star and Lake Holden industrial parks in Orlando, Parkwood Plaza and Seminole Plaza shopping centers and Merritt Island Properties.

Gaines is survived by his son, John R. Gaines, of Lexington, Ky.; daughters Barbara M. Drummond, of Newport, R.I., Joan G. Dinneen of Winter Park and Mary Gaines of New York City; 12 grandchildren and five great-grandchildren.

Funeral arrangements are pending.