When I packed up my things and headed home for winter break, I didn’t plan to come back to Albion until second semester, which starts mid-January. Sadly, Katie (the other Katie) and I traveled back last Wednesday to attend a funeral. In an unfortunate accident, one of our coach Denise’s best friends, Terry – or as the whole team knew her, “Granny” – fell from a young horse and was killed.
Now I know that this blog is supposed to be about my life at Albion, but I wanted to take time to thank Granny for everything she gave to the team, as well as to remember a wonderful lady. In addition to letting us ride her horses in practice, Granny always helped out at our home meets (including lending her horses, trailering additional horses, and holding horses all day) and often tagged along to our other shows as well. She was always there to lend a helping hand and will greatly be missed by past and present team members, as well as everyone from Nottawa Paint Horses. She could always make us laugh and was truly one of a kind.
I remember one time in particular when Katie and I were helping Denise trailer horses to the Held Equestrian Center for our home meet. It was during my freshman year and Granny was riding shotgun. Due to some confusion, we were left with just one two-horse trailer with which to move a total of 18 horses – so as you can imagine we spent quite a bit of time in the truck that day.
It was fall and the four of us chatted about all sorts of things until we got to the subject of Halloween, when Denise started telling us about some pictures that Trish (our team captain at the time) had posted of she and her friends dressed up as the band Kiss. Apparently, Trish and the group walked around the whole town of Albion dressed like that.
As you can imagine, their outfits involved a lot of tight spandex and, as Denise described the costumes to Granny, a look of concern fell over Granny’s face and she finally remarked: “I hope they were packing.”
We all burst into laughter and Denise went on to tell Katie and I that she called Granny “Pistol Packing Granny” because Granny always wanted to bring her gun with them on trail rides – just in case a cougar or other wild animal attacked them on the trail. (Of course, there are no cougars around Nottawa, but Granny wanted to be prepared in case there was an opportunity for her to shoot something.)
So, Granny, I guess this is farewell for now; we’ll all be seeing you again someday. We know our tears can’t bring you back, but we all miss you very, very much.