Linda and Skip Abel
Skip’s love of Boxers started long before Linda knew him. While growing up his family always had Boxers. They had the first Patsy while living in Hawaii in the early 1950s. It was a different time then and Patsy was allowed to roam the base housing where they lived. Most homes had local day maids and Patsy would systematically visit various houses and take the maids’ flip flops (which were of course left outside the back door) to his family’s house and deposit them on the rear step. He can remember many of them walking barefoot to his house to retrieve their flip flops at the end of the day.
In the late 1950s, Skip’s father (an Air Force Lt. Colonel) was transferred to Japan and their “Hawaiian Patsy” had gone to the Rainbow Bridge. However, they had another Boxer – also named Patsy who traveled with them to Japan, remaining in the kennel on the fantail of the ship. Not the best of conditions, but acceptable. One of Skip’s tasks was to exercise and clean up after Patsy. He still remembers going aft to the kennels only to find the ship’s sailors would have her out of the kennel playing with her and she was loving on them.
Their breeding program began by taking them across the country in search of that illusive foundation bitch. They were new to the breed and established breeders hesitated to take a chance on newbies. After two years of searching and ready to give up, they were introduced to a breeder who just happened to have an 11-week old flashy brindle bitch available. They decided to take a look, and fell in love with their soon to be foundation bitch “Story,” Am/Can CH Showline’s Storytime.
“Story” finished at 2 years, 1 month old at the Missouri Valley Boxer Club owner handled by Skip. “Story” was bred to American/Canadian Champion Golden Haze Tuxedo SOM LOM. She whelped 6 beautiful puppies in the late fall of 1993. Three from that litter finished, owner handled by Skip. Their kennel name “Storybook” came from “Story”.
Our dog hobby transformed us from being novices in the obedience ring to winning the first Flyball Dog Degree on a Boxer to breeding the Number One Boxer and Number One Working Dog in 2000, and the nation’s number five Dog All-Breeds, Champion Storybook’s Rip It Up SOM LOM. “Jake” was campaigned by Keith & Cheryl Robbins, and piloted to all of these wins by Michael Shepherd.
Through a limited breeding program of 9 litters in 28 years, they have bred 14 Champions under the Storybook name, the majority owner-handled to their championships.
They have been members of the Land O' Lakes Kennel Club, Missouri Valley Boxer Club, Cedar Valley Boxer Club, and American Boxer Club (Lifetime Members).