In Memoriam – Hannah Mae and Hollie
We were greatly saddened to lose two of our longest serving and best loved horses on March 9, 2019: Percheron mare, Hannah Mae, and Norwegian Fjord, Hollie.
In her tenure here, Hannah Mae faithfully served clients across all of our programs, with a specialty in serving larger teen and adult clients. She helped teens who were recovering from substance dependency, adults who had suffered stroke, and veterans who were working to reclaim their lives from untold trauma. Hollie was a stand-out in Hippotherapy treatment (which uses the movement of the horse in physical, occupational, and speech and language therapy), where she formed strong and lasting bonds with children whose bodies were compromised, but whose spirits were as strong and resilient as hers.
Thank you for your gifts to scholarships in memory of these two great mares.
Hannah Mae, the gentle giant, and Hollie, the sweet and little Norwegian Fjord, were both champions who will be greatly missed at Healing Reins. Both displayed such patience and sense of duty.
Until Hannah Mae was retired due to her advanced age, she carried our larger riders. She knew how to challenge them as their riding skills increased. She was a teacher. Hannah enjoyed her retirement and continued doing ground work with some of our riders.
Hollie was one of the sweetest, most patient horses I have ever met. Whether being used for Hippotherapy or Therapeutic Riding, she was rock solid. You could see in her eyes that she loved her riders and formed a very special connection with them.
As a volunteer, I feel greatly honored to have worked with both of these remarkable mares. In my opinion, they both belong in the Healing Reins Triple Crown Hall of Fame.
Christine B., Volunteer
When I started riding at Healing Reins about five years ago, it was Hannah Mae who saved me when I needed therapy the most. I’d survived a horrible car accident in 1980. After five back surgeries and countless other procedures to try and reduce my incredible pain, I was left with a titanium rod in my lower spine which created other complications. I’d become unable to stand for very long or even to walk further than around my house. I truly believed I was going to end up in a wheelchair, unable to do anything that I loved. Because of my work with Hannah Mae, and the Healing Reins instructors and volunteers, I began using muscles I hadn’t used in a long time. I’m gaining the core strength necessary to reduce my pain, and I’m becoming confident and finding the joy in life that I haven’t felt in years. It is magical!
When I switched horses to learn to canter, I felt guilty because Hannah Mae was my number 1 horse and I felt like I was cheating on her. Then Hannah Mae and I came back together again last year. I looked forward to being her buddy, taking her out to the grass, giving her treats, grooming her, and loving her. I was looking forward to riding her again even without a saddle, but the snow kept me from being able to have that last ride with her. Hannah Mae was the horse that I first became one with, and she will be my saddest farewell. I loved that horse, too much.
Kathryn L., Rider