by Eileen Hunter (CHSA member and manager of the CT Summer Finale, a CHSA show.)
Saturday Sept 10th, 2005 – Hunter’s Glen Celebrate The Morgan Project brought us to Wallingford, CT’s Masonic Home and Hospital. We arrived a half hour before we were scheduled to bring the horses to the front of the hospital. When I went up to find out where they wanted to have us go, I was pleasantly surprised to see so many people lined up in wheel chairs waiting for us. We brought six horses and Richard and Mary Jo Jones brought UC Olympic Star a carriage horse. You can imagine my concern when we were asked to bring the horses up to the front portico which had a low ceiling. There were 5 kids on horseback and one horse that was lead by a teenage girl.
As you can see by the faces of the residents, they were extremely pleased to be able to pet the horses and see them up close and personal. They told us about the horses that they had when they were young. The picture of the man in the straw hat is my favorite, he was a former Cincinnati Reds player and he just loved seeing the horses so close.
One man in his 40’s who must have had a stroke or some kind of injury was there with his wife by his side. He had a stuffed toy dog in his hand. He stared at Caitlyn and her horse Kit. She brought the horse up close to him in his wheel chair and talked to his wife for a few minutes. The man turned to his wife after a couple of minutes and asked his wife if she was going to ride next. She used to ride in Ireland. She was so surprised because he had not spoken since his hospitilazation.
Besides the 100 or so people that were lined up outside, there were 200 more watching from the windows inside the building, Susan the Social director told me that she was so surprised to see the interest the people had in coming out to see the horses. All 4 buildings came up and most had to be wheelchaired up. Of course it helped to have mother nature on our side. The weather was perfect. Our kids, when they were done, were all filled with a feel good feeling and all expressed on how happy they were that they did this project.
Needless to say this was one of the most rewarding experiences I have ever had with our horses and I would like to Thank Georgie Green for coming up with the idea of Celebrating the Morgan! We plan on making this type of activity an annual event.