I must start out by apologizing for being so late preparing the last few months of updates for the website. I’ve been preoccupied lately, working night and day trying to make Red’s life as comfortable as possible. He had arthritis in his front legs, and at the age of 18 we were fighting a losing battle. Red’s pain finally ended on the 4th of February, probably the hardest decision I’ve ever had to make, and the hardest day on the farm for his stable-mate “lil” Girl.
Animals and farms go together. Few farms are limited to just raising crops, and ours certainly isn’t. No matter what kind of animals you raise, you get attached to them, and some more than others. You get fond of ducks, chickens, and some of the smaller livestock. But you really do get to love the larger animals. It’s hard not to. Horses in particular are very intelligent, and they have personalities. They just become as much a part of your family as a dog or cat.
Red was the gentle giant of the farm; he was a horse that knew how to brighten your day. If you were not in the best of moods he would find a way to take your mind off your problems. He had a big heart that he would share with all.
Red was a real character, too. Many times, while I was working on the farm, Red would want to help and our tools would take a walk. Fixing fences was always one of his favorite jobs, he loved to help you move your supplies and tools around the farm – but not necessarily where you wanted them! When we were filling the outside stock tank, he liked to stop the water by standing on the hose. Have you ever tried to move a 1400 lb. horse when he doesn’t want to?
When it came to our guests, he loved them all unconditionally. He knew what it took to get a smile and a laugh, and to warm a heart. Red was a people horse; he’d rather be with people than other horses, and if someone new came to the farm Red was right there to give his greeting. He could make people who might be timid around big horses feel relaxed and affectionate. All he wanted was to be loved and he would do anything to achieve his goal, which meant he mostly gave as much or more than he got.
“lil” Girl and I are sticking together like glue now and will carry on what Red started, helping veterans and their families enjoy the precious gift of life. Our hearts are broken right now, but together we will complete our mission.
So long Red – you will always be in our hearts!
John, Jody, and all our friends and family