Forever Watching

Forever Watching
Forever Watching!

Thursday, July 30, 2015

Back in the saddle

For the 145th Anniversary of the battle of Gettysburg my good friend Ron Palese elevated me to his Chief of Staff. This meant that I could ride, So along with others I rented a horse for the 4 day event. My horse was named Star. Not a bad horse, but somewhat herd bound. Our wrangler, Julie, rode along with me during the event.
I was a bit apprehensive, not knowing the horse and having not ridden in years.
But I climbed up on Star and away we went. It all came back to me as Star was spooked by a mule drawn wagon and began dancing around....I remembered, turn her head, turn her I did and she calmed down.

When I returned home my wife asked how I had done. I proudly responded that not too bad for not having ridden in 20 years! She quickly reminded me that it was more like 30+. LOL

So for as many events as I could I rented horses and was lucky enough to have good friends in the Cavalry wing that looked out for me. Ken Jansen, Patrick Stultz, Steve Reincke to name a few.
They made sure that the horse was properly saddled and tacked and gave me pointers on riding.

This was great, but too far between chances to ride and never knowing what horse I would be riding when I did.

My wife Lynn began volunteering at Kent Animal Shelter and after awhile I joined her. It was great, but not what I really wanted to do. Plus I wanted to take some of these dogs home with me.
Lynn calls me St. Francis and Dr. Doolittle :)
If I could afford it I would have a menagerie for sure.

I started searching the web for horse rescues on Long Island and most just didn't feel right to me. Some were restrictive in the interaction with the horses and I was looking to be involved, not just on the fringes.

So around April or May of 2013 I reached out to the Volunteer Coordinator at North Shore Horse Rescue and Sanctuary. Beth immediately responded and advised me of the training schedule. But unfortunately every day that the training was held I had a conflict with either a Civil War event or a personal obligation. So I continued going to Kent and living life.

In November of 2013 tragedy struck as our only child Frank Jr. was taken from us. He had an asthma attack which closed his airway and resulted in cardiac arrest. Needless to say that this crushed my wife and I and many others. He left his fiancee and a 14 month old son, Jack.
Thank God for them, They eased the loss to some degree, along with others in our life.

After this it was hard for me to attend reenactments. My Son and I had done this together since he was 14. He passed over to the other side of life at the age of 31. You do the math :)

Throughout this time I kept in contact with Beth who was very supportive and even extended an open invitation for me to come out whenever I could.
So I put it out to the Universe, my desire to own and or be around horses. I knew that I couldn't afford the board for one so I figured if I volunteered I could be around them and learn, but more importantly do some good for them......little did I know that I would also be doing good for me......

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