Kathy Lang, Founder/Treasurer, Canterbury NH
“Since the day my memories began, horses have been my heart. I rode whenever I could, saving my babysitting money to go trail riding with rented horses from Barbara Gunn’s stable in East Concord. Life, college, marriage interfered with my “horse life”. But with Becky, I finally got back to it! We took lessons together from Deedee Ludlam at Bear Brook Stable, I was in my 40’s. Becky got the SHOW bug and when she was 11, we bought our first horse. A 2-year-old! LOL! It was a learning experience. We sent him to a wonderful home in Vermont. (heated barn, loving owner).
Gradell’s Delight (Daisy) was our next purchase (after many visits to try others) a Little Bay UVM Morgan mare. And what a truly wonderful horse she was! Becky and Daisy showed all over New England, winning many, many blue ribbons. I was a “Show Mom”.
I leased a wonderful old Morgan, Mick, who I rode as much as I possibly could on Bear Brook trails. Alone and together with my best trail buddy, Linda Smith, who now owns Abaris Stable. I bought a black Morgan gelding, Buddy (Bradvue’s Nasty Boy). I rode many trails with Linda and Tinker Belle Equinox.
We bought a farm in Canterbury and brought Buddy and Daisy home. My parent’s illnesses and my caring for them led to selling Buddy to a fine young lady who still has him. In 2005, February, I lost my Dad to pneumonia. In April, we had to put Daisy down (she is buried here with us). I cried every day for months, she was such a beloved member of our family.
In December 2004, Becky had graduated from UNH with Honors and a degree in Anthropology, and in May, went to Bolivia to a Mayan dig site beside Lake Titicaca. She was also awarded a full scholarship for her Doctorate at the University of California (Riverside), a very well-regarded school for Mayan study. It was enroute to California to begin her studies, that her accident occurred.
Losing Becky was, and will always be, the hardest journey of my life. My mother died four days later. I was numb and lived just drifting through daily routines in a black fog, unable to feel, think or care. Horses saved me. I had months before, bought as a companion to Daisy, a Morgan/Percheron named Dixie. Linda and I rode almost every day. Linda knew my pain, I will be forever grateful to her.
In 2009, friends gathered together to help establish “something” that would honor Becky’s love of all animals, but especially horses. Thus, Becky’s Gift was founded, through which hundreds of NH horses and their owners have been helped. Becky’s spirit has been with us from the beginning. and so the story continues.
Today, my husband and I live on the farm in Canterbury, the home Becky always loved to come back to during college breaks, home to our four English setters and two barn cats, Hoss and Little Joe.
Just a year ago, I bought my “heart” horse, Pirate, a black Morgan gelding who looks at me with such loving eyes and follows me wherever I go. I have him at Abaris with Linda and go every day to ride or just spend time with him. He runs to me when he sees me coming and just fills my heart with so much love.”
Linda Barnes, President, Salisbury NH
“Horses have been a lifelong passion. And more. From youth to adulthood, they have served as faithful friends throughout life’s ups and downs.
“Giving back” to these noble partners has rightfully become a part of who I am. A number of years were spent providing fundraising and fostering for NH Equine Humane Association.
More recent efforts include providing space for non-profit horse rescues to sell donations. The opportunity to join the remarkable team of volunteers that is Becky’s Gift fills me with a level of pride that goes beyond words.
The mission of Becky’s Gift, and the services we provide is, for me, the ultimate in “giving back”.
Susie Campbell, Secretary, Bow NH
Susie grew up in New Jersey and showed on the Hunter/Jumper circuit as a junior rider. During her college years, she competed in the Intercollegiate Horse Show Association events winning 4 National Championships. She was named to the Colby Sawyer College Athletic Hall of Fame in 2009 as a result of her accomplishments.
Following college, Susie was a PATH certified Therapeutic Riding Instructor for almost 20 years. She’s also taught middle school students for over 35 years!
Per Susie, “I think that I am a little bit responsible for Becky’s love and involvement with horses. When she was very young, I gave her a few lessons on a horse named Chief and a pony named Bugs Bunny and that was all it took- she was hooked!”
Larry Barnes, Information Technology Consultant, Salisbury NH
Larry is retired after a long career in computers and consulting. Larry assists Becky’s Gift in all things technology.
Sarai Kramer, Rochester, NH
“I was that horse crazy kid who begged for pony rides at every county fair I ever attended. My family was not well off enough to allow me to pursue my passion but at 13 we found a wonderful lady who was willing to share her equines in return for my mom and I doing some of their care.
Since that time, I’ve worked as a wrangler for two summer camps (over 4 camp seasons), been the barn manager’s assistant for a large Eventing barn, owned my own equines since 2002, been the barn manager for a large Hunter/EQ barn and have now had the joy of having my girls at home for just over a year.
I still dabble in the occasional show, both western and english, but mostly I’m a trail rider. I sew, knit, bake, craft, maintain my vehicles, and work on my little 6.5 acre piece of heaven while my husband serves our country in the Air National Guard”.
Meaghan MacKenzie, Hancock NH
Sandy Messer, New London NH
“At this point in my life, I do low key trail riding on my quarter horse mare with friends. We call them “walk & talks” – great therapy sessions! I enjoy chatting with & listening to people about anything horse.” I am honored to help out with any Becky’s Gift events or situations to support fellow horse lovers in the care of their equine friends.”
Kathy Sweet, Bradford NH
“Horses have always been in my life since age 12. I recently lost Cherokee, my 29 y.o. long-time trail partner. He remains in my heart and eventually, I’m hoping to find my next trail partner.
With a little extra time in my life available, I would be honored to share any of my horsemanship experiences with Becky’s Gift members and clients”.
Heather Tower, Farmington NH
“I started riding at age 3 and since then I have horses running through my veins and was always doing something with horses mainly lessons. As a tween/teen I was a member of Pony Club and competed in 3 Phase. When not competing, you would find me deep in the woods on my horse.
Nowadays, competing is far from anywhere I wish to be but that love of being off the beaten path exploring our beautiful country with my horse is where I am happiest. I get out on the trails as much as I can with my trail riding friends.
I live on a small hobby farm with my husband Troy and my horse Romeo, and my three minis: Windy, Brewin, Lorcan. Also, my pack of rescue dogs whom I always have at least one with me and an assortment of other pet and farm yard critters.
In my love of horses (and all animals too) I have really enjoyed helping in the realm of Rescue; helping horses and owners (lots of other animals too, don’t ask me about my rescues whom call me mom unless you have a few hours LOL). I hope to continue to help local horses (and other critters) in the future whenever there is need.
I feel very strongly about the “Pay it forward” and that’s what I try and do every day”.
Patricia Morris, Attorney, Barnstead NH
Pam Harrison, Founding Member Emeritis