K.C. Chief's mascot is a summer school treat for California

The California R-I Elementary summer school students line up for a chance to pet Warpaint and get a signed card featuring the horse and, Susie, her rider.

The California R-I Elementary summer school students line up for a chance to pet Warpaint and get a signed card featuring the horse and, Susie, her rider. Photo by David Wilson.

The students attending summer school at the California School District received a special visit on Wednesday, June 22, from Warpaint, the long-time mascot of the Kansas City Chiefs. The original Warpaint and his rider Bob Johnson retired several years ago. For the 50th anniversary of the football team in 2009, a new Warpaint was introduced to a new generation of fans.

The new Warpaint is a 13-year-old Paint mare and is ridden on the field by Susie, one of the Kansas City Chief's Cheerleaders.

At a special school assembly, Susie presented the history of the football team to the students, starting with its beginning as the Dallas Texans, then the move to Kansas City, where the team was named in honor of Mayor H. Roe Bartle, whose nickname was "Chief."

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The rider of Warpaint at the Kansas City Chiefs football games, Cheerleader Susie, speaks to California R-I summer school students on Wednesday, June 22.

She read a short story of a horse named Star, born April 24, 1998, who eventually became the new "Warpaint," mascot of the Chiefs.

After a question and answer competition, the students went outside to meet and pet Warpaint.

She was attended by Susie and show horse trainer Merle Arbo, who has been training Warpaint for two years.

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California Elementary School Principal Terri Steffes pets Warpaint.

Susie was a school counselor in Minnesota before moving to the Kansas City area. When she is not working with the football organization, she serves as a counselor for an organization in the Kansas City area.

For more great stories and photos check out issues of the California Democrat.

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