Comments : 37

Hi, a brief but sad post today. Many of you occasionally ask about Duke and I needed the right time and place to talk about him. I shared with you when I got my beautiful horse, Duke about 4  years ago. I had ridden when I was younger for years and loved it, always had a genuine love affair with horses.  Fast forward to about 4 years ago, a friend of mine in Palmetto Bluff  is an active dressage rider and I got the bug again through her. One day, while at her barn, casually my husband and I told her “if in your travels you see a great horse, keep me in mind”. And wouldn’t you know, a few months later, she excitedly called me from a horse show in Fla. telling me she had the perfect horse for me. A beautiful thoroughbred, who had raced when he was young and then went to to become a dressage horse and was now for sale.


It was a big plunge, my riding days were long behind me (or so I thought) but the very idea of riding again was exhilarating. When we met a few weeks later after he was transported to her barn, it was love at first sight. To anyone who met Duke, everyone left with the same impression, he had the personality of a dog not a horse. He was so full of personality, genuinely got excited when he heard me coming, and would pace with anticipation and snorting and neighing until I got close by. It made me feel so loved. I took a few “brush up” lessons and off we went. I felt young again!! When I was with him, I was my happiest.

I didn’t get to ride him as often as I would have liked, since he was in Palmetto Bluff but every time I was there, I took full advantage.  For a brief while, I  was going to bring him to NY. However it was soon winter and another rider in the meantime,  had asked if I would consider leasing him to her, as a full time rider. She was experienced and lovely and he deserved sometime to pamper and ride him daily. It worked out just great for nearly a year until he spooked while on a ride and therefore she spooked too and at 62, she decided her riding days might be over. So we found a wonderful, nurturing home for him in NC at a retired thoroughbred farm, where he would live until I figured out what to do. In the meantime, he developed tendenitis and was receiving regular treatment/therapy but could not be ridden,  he was on stall/partial run out rest for approx 4-5 months.

So as I was figuring this out, tragically, one night a freak seriously southern intense thunder storm with major lightning struck the run in shed where Duke was. It was instant, which might be the only thing that calmed me down upon hearing this horrific news. To know he did not suffer as some horses do if they survive a lightning strike somehow brought me some peace.

Needless to day, I was absolutely devastated (and still am thinking about it). I keep telling myself maybe he was really suffering from his tendinitis and God perhaps decided it was time for him to go up to heaven and frolic pain free. He was 16 and had enjoyed a good life, being pampered and very loved. I hate to think of how this ended but I am a believer in that God has a reason for everything.

So just wanted to share a small collection of pictures from my beautiful Duke with you today (had a few videos which I wish I knew how to upload as they are so great)….



We didn’t have long together but the time we did have I will always treasure.Thanks for making me feel young, alive and carefree again, you sweet gentle giant. Rest in peace beautiful Duke.  Thanks for stopping in, until next time…


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I am so incredibly sorry to read about your precious Duke. Tragic losses like this are so painful.
How blessed you are to carry all of the amazing memories you shared. I pray they will bring you comfort, peace, and a smile to your face when you think of him. Duke will always live in your heart and as you said, God has now made him pain free forever. You gave him a beautiful life and he in turn blessed your life as well.
I wish words could fix everything. God is caring for him now and he will forever be healthy and happy. Love and prayers sent. 🙏🏻🙏🏻🙏🏻❤️

So sorry to hear about Duke. He was beautiful and obviously gave you so much joy during your time together. Stall rest can be so depressing for horses, so at least he had some grazing opportunity. I’m sure you’re right that he’s frolicking in fields of green without pain and knowing he was loved.

I too have a heartbreak after losing my beautiful dressage horse and several months later my wonderful greyhound. They had long lives but I wake up every morning I’m missing them so!,

Tina, I am so sorry for your loss. Thank you for sharing your story and pictures of your beautiful Duke. I know it is difficult to lose a loved one, regardless of whether it is a person or a beloved animal. God brings us joy in so many ways. I am so glad that He gave you Duke, if only for a short while.

How heartbreaking … but I’m sure he knew how much you loved him. Sounds like Duke had a beautiful soul. My prayers are with you to heal your heartache.

Tina I am so sorry and I feel your pain, we lost our Riley, a beautiful thoroughbred fox hunter , that we had from age three, at the age of seventeen, due to a cancerous tumor in his lower intestine. To say this is devastating doesn’t even begin to touch it. Not a day goes by that the tears don’t fall. I know our boys are running free and have no pain now and they know they were loved every day they were with us. Fly high with the angels sweet boys

Oh how awful. I am so sorry. It does make you question why things happen in life. My days of riding are long over. But I will never forget that feeling of being on a horse. Rest in peace dear sweet boy ❤️

I am sorry for the loss of Duke. What a beautiful horse. My Granddaughter, Amanda, also rides. Her favorite horse is G, short for Gaston. We met him last month. So gentle and calm. Amanda would often go to the barn just to be with him, to ride and groom him. Unfortunately, he has joint damage in his hoof and went to an Equine Hospital. His show days are over.

What a beautiful thoroughbred horse, he’s absolutely stunning. I’m so sorry for your loss. Try to cherish the memories you have of your beloved time together. He’ll always have a special place in your heart.

I’m so sorry. Animals become part of our family♥️. It’s so hard when they are gone.

How awful. I’m so sorry. Your love for him shines through your post. God bless him and you.

So sorry for the loss of your beautiful, sweet Duke. Losing an animal friend is never easy. But thankfully he had a wonderful life in his later years.

Wow, he was a beautiful boy…Sorry for your loss. I live here in the Wilmington, NC area and have my horse boarded too. I use to live in Warrenton, Va. and fox hunted in Virginia. It was amazing you started riding again that was a wonderful accomplishment for you. Those lightening storms are unforgiving.. I think about that here in NC, when we have a lightening storm at night and I know my girl, Bouquet is out in the field where she’s boarded..

I am so sorry for your loss, Duke seemed to be one of those special ones, I know he was so very much loved.

Oh Tina, How heartbreaking. I am so sorry that your sweet boy was taken. Godspeed Duke.

I send my deepest sympathy to you, Tina. Whenever you wrote about Duke, you conveyed how special he was and how much you loved him. I am very sorry for your loss.

I am so very sorry for you heart break! Duke was blessed to have been loved and cherished by you. Sending comfort and hugs.

Hello Tina, I just recently joined the Enchanted Home group of blog readers (and buyers !) which I really enjoy. Have admired your house up north but didn’t know you had a lowcountry connection. Your post about your horse Duke was a surprise, but went straight to my heart. I am 82 years old and have ridden and had horses since I was 4 years old…..pleasure, trails, showing, eventing, driving and foxhunting. To lose a horse in any way is always hard, but to have it happen in an unexpected, almost incredible manner is devastating. I lost a driving horse to a freak occurrence years ago and it still haunts me. My condolences to you.
On another note…I now live in South Carolina and go out with Lowcountry Hunt. We ride at private plantations between Charleston and Savannah and we have events at Palmetto Bluff. I would be happy to have you come out with us if and when you are in the neighborhood. I now ride a 2001 Jeep when out in the field as my days on horseback are behind me. Again, my heartfelt sympathy on your loss of Duke.

So very sorry for your loss. It’s heartbreaking to lose a beloved pet. Even though you had Duke for a short time, it sounds like you had a wonderful connection. Again, so sorry!!!

Oh Tina… I am so sad to her the news of Duke. I own 6 thoroughbreds and show extensively in California. I cannot imagine losing a horse from a lightening strike! You have many lovely photos to remember Duke. I hope you will keep his blanket or something of his to remember him. There is no better smell than “horse” on your clothes. My kindest thoughts regarding your loss.

He gave joy and he received joy. One can not ask for more. I am sorry for your loss. I spent the past 4 days at a horse farm in Virginia. I can understand a bit what his loss means to you. But – oh! The wonderful memories you have!

Beautiful companion. I love the white diamond on his head. So sorry for your loss. Rest in Peace Duke.

Someone once wrote, “Good dogs never die; they just go to sleep in your heart.” Surely the same must be true for horses. Hugs to you. Duke is waiting at the Rainbow Bridge.

Awh so sad – we just lost our little Toby (Bishon Frise) dog after 14 years – like loosing a child/sibling. They are probably in a better place. Sorry for your loss 🙁

I am so sorry for the loss of Duke. He certainly was a beautiful boy and full of personality. Glad you were able to have such lovely times with him. From a fellow horse lover. ❤️😢

I’m so heartbroken reading about Duke. God knows whats best even if it hurts us. There is a reason for everything. So glad he was loved before going to heaven. Hugs

So sorry to hear about Duke. My sister, niece, and first cousin ride and I know how much they love their horses.. Our animals/pets bring so much joy to our lives and I hope you cherish the memories of your time with Duke.

I am so sorry for your loss, Duke was a beautiful horse. I also love horses they are such beautiful animals.

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