"I learn something new everyday."

"Good things take time." — MJC

the People of KIS

wendy and marty costello

Wendy and Marty Costello began their breeding  program after a series of unusual events and coming from very different backgrounds. IN 2009 they celebrated 40 years of marriage, 44 years together.

Wendy grew up up in Kansas City, Mo and left home to attend George Washington University in Washington DC. She studied to be a teacher, and did her student teaching in the suburbs of Washington DC.  Marty grew up in New Orleans , LA  and scored high enough on a test for enlisted navy personnel to attend the US Naval Academy in Annapolis MD. Wendy transferred to GWU in the middle of her sophomore year from University of Mo at KC .  They met  during a "blizzard" :-) ( 5-6" of snow) in DC at semester break in January 1966. Schools were "shut down" since there was no way to get around the city, and the midshipmen of the USNA  were told to stay put, not to attempt to come back to the Academy from their break in DC!  So after 4 days walking around the capitol it was a done deal!

The Costellos were married at the Naval Academy in 1969.  Wendy had grown up with an early love of teaching children, and dreaming of horses. She had never owned a horse but rode weekly with her father on leased horses , in western saddles.  Marty did not . His interests were in Math, science and eventually Engineering. He became a Marine Corps A-4 jet pilot after his 4 years at the Naval Academy , being based in many places including Yuma, Arizona, Pensecola FL, Japan. Okinawa. Then he left the service and became  an executive with Miller Brewing Co.

They have two children, with their son Adam pretty much taking after his father's interests, and daughter Jill, very artistic and creative, also loving horses and all animals. It was Jill who inspired Wendy to get back on a horse and that started the  events that ended up in  a love of Dressage and the horses that are so well suited for it.

Adam and his wife Helen have two sons; Corlan, born in 2007, and Quincy born in 2009.

Wendy had raised puppies and some kittens in her life, so it followed that eventually she wanted the  experience of breeding a foal of her own,. .to be her "last best horse. By now, she was seasoned with some Dressage lessons, and the ups and downs of buying and selling a horse or two for herself , her daughter, and Marty!  In 1997 she located a lovely 14 yr. old TB mare, Ona Rainy Day .."Remy", a Bold Ruler Granddaughter, 2nd level Dressage horse, and bought her since she could also take Dressage lessons on her and then select a stallion. Remy was a great school master since she would not  perform her movements  very well unless Wendy rode it well. 

Donavan entered the picture when Wendy was introduced to him and she asked if she could breed her mare to Donavan. The answer was  yes.

Then  she learned about inspections "Keurung", the triangle , and Remy did very  well !  Duesenjaeger ( Pilot)  was born and very much liked at the AHS inspection in 1999.  Shorlty after that, Donavan's circumstances changed and Wendy and Marty  bought him, immediately  putting them on a very steep learning curve. 

Donavan the Good Luck Charm

It seemed as if from that moment on , wonderful things started happening. Wendy and Marty found JJ Tate, a wonderful rider who had finished her Young Riders term, earned her  2 year stay in Hungary to ride with Gyula Dallos, and was riding at Grand Prix well before she was 20. She and Donavan clicked, and she was his "Lady" from then on. Donavan then progressed very successfully through I-II and Grand Prix, finishing a very  exciting career started with George Williams. Costellos had a wonderful time with JJ and Donavan giving clinics and exhibitions. During this time Marty became the Tech. Guy for the Donavan Group, LLC formed to promote Donavan and breed his offspring. Wendy excels in PR and advertising, and  works very closely with the clients , mare owners buyers, etc.   She is the consummate horse lover. Soon they bred their first Top filly, then a Top Colt, then a Top Foal, and Get of Sire class winning colt. Then  as the offspring  went under saddle, were gratified that  Donavan's kids were every bit as good minded, and talented, and charming as he is. They are very rideable and trainable. So they have gone on to bring great happiness to their owners and riders. Each season they are out there picking up awards and High Scores, moving up the levels. Oh and several are jumping and eventing! 

Along the way Costellos received much help. From Drs. Bob Magnus, Douglas Langer, Andy Schmidt, and staff of Wisconsin Equine Clinic, George and Roberta Williams, Dr. Ann Turner, orig. in NC. and many neighbors and friends.
JJ Tate : She trains and rides our youngsters to success.. every one of them!

There are  not enough words to describe the wonderful person and horsewoman that JJ Tate is. Please see our page dedicated to her, and also her own website. http://www.Team-TateDressage.com  Our lives are enriched by her.

Jill Costello : daughter and very good horsewoman.

First she was the  inspiration to get back into riding, ( she was about 14 and Wendy was 40) and then she was always one step ahead in gathering information and  experience.. .for a while!  :-)  Jill has bred several excellent foals.

She remains a source of good advice and some hands on aide.

As we downsized the breeding program in Spring of 2010, selling several horses and foals, we also had to restructure our  staff. We welcomed for help on weekends,Michael Keller.  Michael will have  big shoes to fill as Jamie Brown , a HS graduate, moves along toward higher education. IN 2010  after some  personnel coming  and going, Nancy Roberts has come to oversee  the every day barn work and  be there for us if we should go out of town.  We miss Shari Walls who felt the call of the WEST.. and is now working to preserve our  Forest and  Wildlife in Arizona hoping to teach one day.  Good Luck to Josie Gomon who  may return to school  in the Fall. 

Four legged 'People' of KIS

Of course there are the horses. Read about them on the website.

But there are a few others too important or too cute to ignore.

Daisy: Yellow Lab, getting up in years, but still playful and agreeable always!
Chessie: Rescued Wheaten Terrier, always a joy, with a few twists!

Bekki:  Newest Canine, mini Aussie, DOB 6/08. She wins everyone's hearts, and is very smart!! Enjoyed meeting our grandson Corlan!


We have 3 cats, Annie, Abbey and Popsie... Popsie gray left below, seen at night; Annie is the Calico seen on the post, Abbey is the  tiger stripe, inherited with the barn. They  are a lot of fun, and keep the dogs entertained! And we have no mice!!