Monday, June 25, 2018

Milliron Monday: Everyone Loves Horses 6 25 18

Sit tall in the saddle; Hold your head up high
Keep your eyes fixed where the trail meets the sky
And live like you ain’t afraid to die
Don’t be scared, just enjoy the ride.
 ‘The Ride’ Chris LeDoux

Originally, the first chapter of Dr. Smith’s Biography  Milliron: Dr. Abbott “Pete” Smith, D.V.M. The Biography, was Bud. After many edits and reviews, I decided to make the story of Bud the Prologue vs. Chapter 1. The story of Bud introduces you to Dr. Pete Smith and his charismatic character. Pete was rough, tough, just like John Wayne. He could ride a horse and feel every muscle and tendon the horse was using – and he could also tell you the name of each muscle, tendon, etc., and explain how they worked. He was an expert equine veterinarian and known for his pioneer horse surgeries. But the story of Bud is about Pete - the man who kept the trails clean on Milliron Farm, his love for horses, his compassion for life on the trail.

Bud was the horse Pete was riding the day of his harrowing ride through the Milliron Farm woods. Farmhand, Ibrahim Schubert was there to eyewitness the event. Here is an excerpt from the Prologue of Milliron: Dr. Abbott “Pete” Smith, D.V.M. The Biography…

Pete gathered Bud to a trot at the trailhead, just above the house. Ibrahim was close behind with Junie. They worked their way to the cliff pasture below the Negro Den, a locally famous cave where slaves hid during the Underground Railroad. Riding above the edge of the cliff, to the top meadow, Pete decided to stop and secure his raincoat. The raincoat was neatly folded and securely tied to the back of his saddle cantle. Crunch. Crumble...
The crumbling noise of the raincoat on his haunches was more than Bud could take. This time the Arabian side of Bud’s brain took over and he spooked! Whirling in a panic, throwing Pete off balance. “Whoa!” Pete tried to make a quick dismount and was able to free his boot from the right stirrup, but the left boot wouldn’t budge! The move alarmed Bud even more and he was off on a dead run back to the barn, unmercifully dragging Pete. 
      Pete’s left special-order logging boot was wedged in the Monte Foreman stirrup. The quarter-inch logging spikes gripped the stirrup without signs of release. This would be the point where it is suggested that you do not wear logging boots while riding horseback.
Custom made by White Boots, USA, Pete’s boots had metal toe cleats, spikes screwed into the soles for added traction and durability. Not just ordinary boots, the shafts came up to Pete’s calves. Secured by nylon laces, these boots did not easily come off.
      Pete was in a precarious situation. His six-foot frame was in peril. “Whoa!!” Pete yelled again emphatically, along with some other explicit interjections. Bud didn’t recognize the desperate timbre of Pete’s voice. Pete’s arms and head bounced wildly as the horse plunged through the dense forest. Pete tried to slide back into the saddle, but his hand couldn’t reach the saddle horn. It was so far away! Reins flying, branches cracking, brambles groping, hooves pounding; it was no use. Bud mistook Pete’s flailing arms as a signal to run harder and faster.
      Ibrahim and Junie looked on in disbelief as Pete and Bud raced by; jumping fallen trees, weaving through prickly thickets, and dodging pendulous grapevines. Pete was being perilously dragged. Both arms flew over his head, his right leg pounding onto the saddle with Bud’s every stride. He looked like a ragdoll tossed to the wind.
      Wham! Pete’s body slammed into a large fallen tree as Bud raced by. Mouth agape and in shock, Ibrahim followed in chase to stop the runaway horse, but to no avail. Running through the dense woodland, Ibrahim spotted Pete’s new wallet gun lying on the forest floor. It must have fallen out of Pete’s pocket. Ibrahim was thinking how lucky Pete was that he hadn’t been shot in the foot! He grabbed the gun and kept running.

Read more of Pete’s wild ride and his life in his biography, available from AmazonBarnes & Noble, or locally at Little Professor Book Center, Athens, Ohio. If you have a copy, write a review. Books do not have to be purchased online to write a review.

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If you have a story to tell about Dr. Smith, please send to to be included in Tails of a Country Vet Volume II !

Connect with Author Gina McKnight

Through captivating, powerful, and emotional anecdotes, we celebrate the life of Dr. Abbott P. Smith. His biography takes the reader from smiles to laughter to empathy and tears. Dr. Smith gave to us compelling lessons learned from animals; the role animals play in the human condition, the joy of loving an animal, and the awe of their spirituality. A tender and profound look into the life of a skilled and pioneer veterinarian.

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