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numerous horse shows they attend each year.

A trip to Tennessee found them looking through “Ranches for Sale” ads and quickly they went from California busi- ness entrepreneurs to becoming Tennessee ranchers. Their ranch Blue Ridge Farms is in a small town, Spring Hill, near Nashville. Before most folks in the industry even knew what “certified organic” meant, Caron developed new horse products using natural ingredients that have been in use with great success for over a decade. By uniquely developed processes and by using only fresh certified organic herbs and ingredients, Dan and Caron’s products are used by horse owners on hors- es of every size and description throughout the world. Caron and her team of support staff have most likely done more independent research and develop- ment on certified organic and herbal products than anyone else in the busi- ness and the work has resulted in development of over forty products for horses and dogs. From back yard ponies to hors- es competing on the U.S. Olympic Teams, Caron has been the “go to” source for successful pro- grams to resolve a myriad of problems, often when all other conventional methods have failed. Caron personally devel- oped and formulated all the products currently being distributed by Blue Ridge Distribution Inc. (For more information, go to www.bluerb.com.)

After Hours

Due to back surgery Caron, now 49 years old, cannot ride anymore but she still travels with her horses and drives carts. She says, “The world just doesn’t know what angels horses are.” Daniel and Caron have been married twenty- three years and although Daniel shares Caron’s dream he doesn’t ride himself. Well, he doesn’t ride horses. He rides a Harley-Davidson motorcycle. Daniel says he won’t “ride any- thing that doesn’t come standard with a brake pedal.” But

it wasn’t a motorcycle or even a horse that put Daniel in the hospital. It was the most common home accident that occurs. Attempting to fix a heating duct in the room where they produced their products, he fell from a ladder two sto- ries high onto a cement floor and severely injured the left side of his body including his arm, wrist and hand. After two surgeries to piece his elbow back together and recon- struct his wrist, he was finally back at work. The prognosis ruled out ever riding motorcycles again or having little more than limited use of the arm. Less than a year later while loading his bike to take to auction, he discovered he could still ride without pain. He still does. The Haggerty’s don’t let challenges of life stop them. Instead, they use them to ascend to the next level of their dreams. Isn’t it strange that some people find opportunity in adversity and others don’t? Like Dan says of his and Caron’s life together, “It’s the kind of life that fills you with passion and gratitude.”

Caron with her current driving horse Buster, a standardbred/hackney cross.

It seems to me that there are many unusual people that spend their lives exe- cuting their passions with horses. Caron and Daniel are perfect examples of this. Oh, I know dogs are special and cats too. They’ve broken my heart because of their passing while letting me smile that they were given to me, even for a while. But hors- es, for some reason, seem to fill a unique place in our hearts and in our minds. Perhaps it is because they open magi- cal windows into our

hearts that we didn’t know were there. No one knows exactly how they do this. They just do . . . the why is unim- portant. The relationship with them is pure, unspoiled, and unadulterated. We marvel at them because we have such a difficult time developing these same traits in ourselves. Perhaps that’s the magic. They already have what we, as humans, search for, mostly unsuccessfully, in ourselves and others for most of our lives.

WT

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