MEMORIAL TRIBUTES TO THOSE NEAR & DEAR TO US
Mrs. Gretchen Harris, Leslie’s mom. She was born in 1922 & passed from this life on May 3, 2001. She was a wonderful woman of God, who always thought the best of everyone she met & gave me the courage to seek after my dreams. She lived long enough to see me realize my dream of establishing Jacobs’ Ladder & beginning the path I am on now. She once told me that if she believed in reincarnation, she would want to come back as one of my horses, because she knew how much I love them!
Gabe Hendley, age 4, of Nashville, GA., son of Greg & Deanna Hendley & big brother to Lucas, passed away unexpectedly on 8-15-04. Gabe was one of our favorite little riders. His first horse ride was on Sugar. He is shown in this picture on Sassy. We cherish the time we had with him.
Mikey Smith was born on March 16, 1997. His adoptive family included Ronnie, Karen & Joshua Smith. He faced many challenges in his life, but was a blessing to those who knew him for the 8 years that he was with us. He rode Bogie when he was able to ride at Jacobs' Ladder & was frequently seen with a big smile on his face when he rode. Mikey died on January 16, 2006, leaving many behind who love & miss him
"Angel Ross was a special friend & an inspirational volunteer. She was born on Mar. 7, 1968, & due to complications from surgery, she left this earthly home way too early, on April 23, 2014. Angel was a daughter, sister, wife, mother & grandmother, as well as a friend to everyone who met her. She loved helping our riders, & especially enjoyed going to the Special Olympics State Horse Show. Because of her love, a fund has been set up to assist families who want to go to the state show & need monetary help. If you loved Angel, & want to honor her, donations may be sent to Jacobs' Ladder. We miss you Angel, but know you are looking down on us & smiling."
Comanche: Born in 1991, he came to us in June of 2000. He was a good, solid horse & was used in our college program as well as our adult special riders program. He was a con-man & could “turn on” a limp, if he knew it would get him out of work. In 2003, as a result of health problems we were unable to fix, Comanche was sent off with Milo to horse heaven on March 30, where he can eat to his heart’s content.
Milo: A Tennessee Walking Horse who was donated to us by Dr. & Mrs. Miller Grow, in February, 2002. Milo was born in 1981 & was only with us a short time, but he was a quick learner & took good care of his young riders. They liked his different walk & he loved the attention he got! He was found to have an inoperable cancer & crossed over the Rainbow Bridge on Mar. 30, 2003.
Ladybug: Our very first petite pony, she was born in 1978. Her previous owner called her Lady, but she was cute as a bug to us, so she became Ladybug! She was already in her twilight years when she came to us, but quickly wrapped us around her little hooves. Her little body wore out on June 11, 2005.
Buddy: Born in 1978, Buddy was a big tall, lanky Thoroughbred. He spent some of his life at the Good Shepherd Therapeutic Center & then went to live at the Lion’s Camp for the Blind, before coming to Jacobs’ Ladder in March of 2002. He was good at his job & could be counted on to take care of his riders. In May, 2005 it was discovered that he had an erratic heart rhythm & he was retired from work. On August 7, 2005, he stretched out to take a nap & closed his eyes for the last time. He left behind his soul-mate, Divine.
Beau: The biggest horse that we have ever owned, Beau definitely stood out in his field! He was born in 1987 & was donated to us in July 2002 by Matt & Lisa Edwards. He was a Percheron & pulled a large wagon, which carried us in many parades & he was also like sitting on a sofa to ride. He was a sweet boy & was always gentle with our riders. Due to a degenerative spinal problem, he was retired from work in January, 2006. Knowing he wouldn’t get better, we faced the tough decision of letting him go on Oct. 24, 2006.
Sonny: Donated by Libby Roper, Sonny came to be a special part of our family in February, 2004. He was born in 1984. He was such a kind old soul; he could always be counted on to help fearful riders overcome their worries. He moved so slowly, some of us felt like we were dragging him around the ring, but he filled a need – really well! Sonny had some health problems near the end & lay down for the last time on May 29, 2007.
Divine: Our movie star; she was in “The Long Riders”, filmed in the North Georgia mountains and released in 1980. We never knew exactly how old she was, but we estimate that she could have been 32 years old. She was retired from carrying riders in late 2006, but everyone loved to brush her soft coat, so she still got lots of attention. She was with us for almost 6 years. On her final day, February 23, 2008, she was groomed & then she stretched out in the sunshine. Her departure was peaceful. She told us she was ready to run the fields with her boyfriends, Buddy & Sonny!
Sassy was born on April 6, 1980. She came to live with the Jacobs’, as their first horse in December, 1992. She was a smart & kind horse, & even before Jacobs’ Ladder was a reality, we knew that Sassy was very special. In August of 1996, Sassy went to assist at the Atlanta Paralympics. In 1999, when Jacobs’ Ladder began, Sassy took care of everyone & continued to do that for many years. On August 2, 2010, at the age of 30, Sassy was ready to cross the Rainbow Bridge; leaving behind many broken hearts, but greeting her horse friends who had gone on before her.
Princess has an interesting story. She was living in a pasture in south Lowndes County when Glenn went to buy a used horse trailer from a man. She literally got thrown in the trailer & came home to live with the Jacobs family on Christmas Eve 1992. There was no stall or pasture in our back yard on Eager Road, so Glenn & the boys stayed up & built her a stall. We quickly learned that she loved to go on trail rides. She filled a need when Jacobs’ Ladder began, helping riders sit on her really smooth trot. In 2008 she was retired from the riding program due to an ongoing lameness, but she still enjoyed the brushing & attention she got. On Jan. 26, 2011, after going downhill for a week, she was buried near her friend Sassy. We think she was at least 30 years old. We miss you Princess
White Sugar came to Jacobs’ Ladder on April 30, 2001. She was part of a ‘package deal’ which included two other horses, Buddy & Divine, from the Georgia Lion’s Camp for the Blind. She was 17 years old at the time & had already been called Sugar her whole life. Things got complicated, since we already had a horse named Sugar, so she quickly became “White” Sugar, while our other horse became “Brown” Sugar. It made perfect sense. One was white with freckles & the other a dark bay (brown). Little Miss White Sugar quickly won the hearts of everyone she encountered. We called her our “Energizer” Pony, as she would go & go & go! Her 12 years here were special to all of us. She was excellent for our beginner riders & was able to carry them safely as they learned to ride unassisted. During her 28th year she was retired from our riding program due to back issues, but she still loved attention & we were happy to give it to her. Her declining health forced us to make the decision to allow her spirit to run free once again over the Rainbow Bridge on July 3, 2013, at the age of 29.
Bud came to us in 2011. He was a Florida Cracker Horse, & already had many years here on this earth. Bud could be counted on to carry riders who were scared, nervous or noisy & was seldom rattled by anyone. He was uncomplicated to work with & we depended on him regularly. Near the end of his days, he was having trouble seeing things clearly, had some problems eating things that required much chewing & his walk became unsteady. It was determined that in his older years he was no longer enjoying life & that the right thing to do for him would be to allow him to leave us. His passing has left a hole in our hearts.
Cody was our first donated horse when Jacobs’ Ladder began! He used to barrel race & even when he came to us at the age of 13, he loved to run! He was an American Quarter Horse. His personality was huge. He loved to be loved, he had a great work ethic & was great with all our riders. In his final years, he had some health problems, but still enjoyed attention from all who would come by for a visit & especially loved getting treats! He was 29 years old when he crossed over into greener pastures, free from breathing problems. We love you, Cody. Run fast again!