Dee was found lying on her bed, still clothed from the day before like she had come in to rest. Her family found her like that the next morning. It appeared that she had just gone to sleep peacefully and not awakened.
I was Dee's friend. I am proud of that. Dee was a passionate person who was not afraid to ruffle feathers or cause a commotion if what she was doing was the right thing, for her family, for the horses, or for someone else.
Dee was besotted with horses from her early days. Jumpers and eventing trained, Dee learned other disciplines through the work of her daughter Melissa. Dee had an eye for evaluating a horse that I wish I had. She could spot lameness and recommend a course of action before most people had settled on which leg was hurt.
Dee knew what a great horse should look like and was striving to breed that perfect horse to the top of her capabilities. She was generous with her horses and her time. She sold me the "horse of a lifetime" for a couple thousand dollars. With work, this Flagmount horse has now won Pin Oak Grand Champion and USEF Zone 7 finals. I could have never received a better gift.
But like many of us in the horse business, Dee constantly hustled, begged and borrowed to keep her mission to get her daughter, Melissa, the best horses and the best opportunity to one day ride at Rolex. There was never enough money. It is a tough, unkind business especially to those of us that do not have the financial backing or resources of the big trainers.
Dee is gone now. I can't believe it. She has left behind her legacy of some great horses, an insightful work of writing in her blog and her passion which will live on through her daughter, Melissa, her son, Jeremy and her granddaughter, Dakota.
She loved Dakota more than anything. Help me to help Melissa, Jeremy and Codi to have the money to pay for Dee's funeral. My mother died recently and if a dear friend had not helped me, I don't know how I would have paid for it all.
Their grief is so fresh and strong right now, let's take away the worry of how they will possibly pay for her to be laid to rest as she should be.
Many thanks to all of you that are reading this. May you be kind enough to help another as Dee would have helped you, if only she could. Thank you.
- Kim Walker
- Kate Leckie
- Ronald Zabala-Goetschel
- Karen Joyal
- Jon and Jennifer Holling
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