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Born May 6, 2003 (Vicar -- Buzz Buzz Buzz, by Well Decorated) 

Raced 35 times, 6 firsts, earned $222,684

The Village Vicar was a stallion in a direct to kill pen. He arrived with a sticker on both of his hips that took months to finally peel off. The stickers were meant to be permanent and never come off.

A note from Diana Baker who was involved in the saving of this beautiful boy:

"I got a call about a beautiful black stallion who had earned $222,000 on the track and was at a dealer's and headed to slaughter. I asked them to make sure he didn't ship. I said I'd find a way to save him. It was right around Barbaro's birthday so I was able to rally some support and get funds together to save him in memory of Barbaro. I had no place to send him but was able to get him quarantined, with a lot of help, of course. And then an angel in New York agreed to take him."

The Village Vicar aka Vic is living in North Salem and loving life. He belongs to a great family and has his own girl to give him all the attention he needs and deserves. He loves to jump and has a permanent future instead of being put on a truck and heading across the border.


Bay gelding, born April 2, 1998 (Metfield -- Debutante's Wish, by Raised Socially)

63 starts, 11 wins, graded stakes placed. 

I think of this story a lot and I still get tears thinking of it. We have met so many special people through the years and many of them have become close friends to us. Beverly Searle Strauss was a huge contributor to why we are here. She would talk with Mr Hettinger and they together would save many horses a week from New Holland (a huge kill auction in PA).

What's Your Wish was one of the saves. Bev had to leave him behind that Monday and it haunted her. The next day she called the kill buyer and brought Wish to Mid-Atlantic Horse Rescue for a few days until he could get shipped to New York. Wish was with us for about a year. Bev would always check on him. She felt an instant connection with him and he was always on her mind. She had found a home for one of her personal horses and this meant she had a space available for the love of her life What's Your Wish! She called me up and we sent him home to her. They have competed a lot but now Wish just hangs at Bev's place and loves getting the gold treatment he so deserves. He is busy keeping the other horses in line and takes his job seriously!


Dark bay gelding, born March 4, 2007. (Wild West -- Warta, by Danzig)

12 starts, earned $2,612, last raced 2013

Today's story is about Running Made Easy aka Slim and his mom Brie. Brie writes: 

"When I started writing this I had to remind myself of the horse that I got a little over a year ago. They had told me how he had to bribed out of his stall (he was afraid of the doors) and that he was very shy. When I first met Slim, "Running Made Easy," all I saw were the big inquisitive ears, sweet eyes and these huuuge shoulders that I instantly knew were made to be galloping cross country. He was so quiet and shy--when he got home it took him a while to come out of his shell and we took our time bringing him into work, yet every new challenge he met with honest, eager curiosity. This past year has honestly been one of the most fun years of my thirty-year riding experience. Training and competing Slim reminded me why I love this sport. He seemed to throughly enjoy everything we did and has grown into a total ham. Slim is also a total pet, there are required cuddle sessions everyday before/during/after work. He also fully adopted my dog as "his" dog. His best friend is a fellow Akindale alum, the two were able to go to most of the competitions this past year together. I was lucky enough to get Slim to several competitions this year and he successfully completed several beginner novice and novice levels. I'm looking forward to what the future holds for the two of us and am so grateful to have such an amazing creature in my life now. I cannot thank the wonderful team at Akindale enough for bringing Slim into my life!l" 


16 hand bay gelding born February 2, 2009 (Closing Argument – Vital Spark, by Miswaki)

11 starts, earned $21,642, last raced 2013

This week our story is about a horse named Inquest and a girl named Heather. Heather came to us through a very dear friend to Akindale. She was just getting back into riding and was looking for a quiet patient horse to help her get back to it. Since the day Inquest arrived we had found it hard to believe he was a racehorse. Speed was not his thing and the slower he could go, the better. He loved going on trail rides at HIS own pace. We love these two together and they will always be a special piece of Akindale's graduates' story.


16.1+ bay gelding, born April 4, 2010 (Tiznow - My Success, by A.P. Indy)

Raced once, 5/31/2013

 Patient came to us from NYTHA's program, Take the Lead, and he always put a smile on our faces. Thank you, Michelle, for the update. We are so happy for both of you!

From Michelle:

I adopted Patient Investor, a 4 year old, in October, a month and a half after I lost my horse to colic. I thought I needed to be patient and the right horse would come along. I called Heather about 2 weeks after I had lost my horse, saying "This is very hard to make this call so soon," but I didn't want to call her after several months had passed by and have her say, "If you had only called me a few weeks earlier I had a great horse but it just got adopted!"

I had time in the middle of September and had already gone on the Akindale site and seen Patient Investor. I asked Heather about him. She said, "Come over today and see and ride him."

I really liked him--flashy mover, handsome and kind of like a big dog who just wanted to crawl into your lap. Again I needed to be patient. Another person had been trying to come and see him for a month. Heather told me this person had first dibs on him since they had made an appointment a while ago. I just sat back and waited for the text saying they liked him and that I needed to keep looking, which I did, but I had my mind on PI (Patient Investor).

The text came--they did not want him. I took my good friend Margaret along and test rode him again. She said, "I think he is a good project for you." So I got him on trial for two weeks and did a lot in those two weeks. He was great, nothing seemed to bother him. Tarp on the ground, plywood, water, loading on the trailer. He really had not jumped at all, so in the woods one day with a friend we sailed over logs and stone walls. I said, "OK I'll take I'll keep him." So all the paperwork had been filled out. All they had to do was cash my check.

Oh yes, remember in the beginning, when I mentioned he was 4. Well, I have never had a young horse and I have been riding since I was 5. Patient Investor is the perfect name. I need to be very patient and invest a lot of time. So his name will remain as he came--Patient Investor aka PI.

Since getting him, I have referred two other people to Akindale who have found horses there. What a great place to get a horse!


Jackie and her paddock mate were Thoroughbred yearlings that were so malnourished they were the size of weanlings. Jackie developed pneumonia, which allowed the SPCA to go in and take her and her friend. Unfortunately her friend had to be euthanized due to being starved--her bones were growing crooked, even surgery couldn't help. But Jackie blossomed with us and grew up to be a tough, curious and willing girl! We are so proud of her and Sarah! Jackie couldn't have found a better partner than Sarah. Look at them now!