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Horsesback riding helps First Coast residents with disabilities

10:16 AM, Sep 16, 2012   |    comments
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JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Nearly two dozen First Coast residents with physical disabiities were given the chance to leave the confines of their wheelerchairs and ride a horse Saturday.

The event sponsored by Brooks Rehabilitation Adaptive Sports and Recreation was held at  Horse Haven Ranch in St. Augustine.

Greg Mason was one of the participants. When he was a freshman in college a drunk driver took away his ability to walk. That was 15 years ago, but he's finally getting the chance once again to be mobile thanks to the horses.
Mason said, "It's very freeing because normally I am alway in my wheelchair or bed."
Pamela Mason, Greg's mother said, "Being able to do activities you were told you can't do anymore, never will do again. it opens up a whole new world for him and for us as a family. We've gotten to be able to meet other people who undersatnd what it means to do something like this."
Brooks Rehabiliation offers these horse back riding events four times a year completely free of charge and open to anyone with a physical disability. 

"A lot of people out here today have suffered strokes, tramatic brain injuries, they are parapelegics paralzyed from spinal cord injury or chronic illness so we've got a mixed bag but they are all challenged with mobility," said Alice Krauss with Brooks Rehabilitation.

Luther Delp was hit by a car three years ago leaving him paralyzed below the waist, but he is not letting that slow him down, and events like this help keep him going.
"It feels great because when this first happened. i thought my life was over and it's not," Delp said. "It's just another chapter in my life. I can do almost anything I've done before I just need help with it."

Brooks Rehabilitation will host another free horse riding event for those with physcial disabilities in November, and it offers a wide range of free sporting events from golf to archery.

Just visit their website by clicking here: 

First Coast News

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