Hank

(1992 – )
Owned by Meggan Hill-McQueeney
Inducted: 2018

Photos

Photo courtesy of carriedodt
From the horse’s mouth . . .
You call it a work ethic - I call it character. Each day my ears remain forward, my expression is quiet, my brown eyes soft, my footfall steady and my confidence is bigger than the arena because no matter who you are from two years to 92, I want you to know - we got this!

My job is honorable - a calling - and I will not fail. I have heard your heart beat. I have listened to your voice. I have studied carefully who you are through your touch. I have held your secrets. I have absorbed your tears. I have heard you laugh. I have lifted you up, even on your darkest days. I have been here for you friend. I have offered manners and kindness with a nuzzle. I have been the blanket to lay on when anxiety fires.

I have proudly carried you, even when you were off center. I have hoped you would come back. I have waited. I have nickered when you returned.

I have withstood your kicks and pulls. I have longed for you to learn timing and feel. I have required your trust to let go. I have willingly long trotted patterns. I have loped endless awesome miles. I have taken you on for blue ribbons, gold medals, belt buckles and certifications.

I have served. I have always believed in you. Love, Hank


"Some 20 years ago, BraveHearts Therapeutic Riding & Educational Center welcomed Hank," said Megan McQueeney. "He remains the most honest, willing, confident and noble partner we have partnered with in our center."

From standing quietly while a young child who is suicidal slowly brushes and repeatedly hugs him to allowing a veteran, who uses a wheelchair and has never ridden without assistance, to ride freely on this horse for the first time - there is nothing this horse can't do.

His eyes soften, his ears quietly attentive while his nose drops to the wheelchair selflessly whispering, "It’s good to meet you." Hank has helped thousands of children, adults and veterans on every level.

It was Hank who was selected to be the riderless horse at the funeral service for Bravehearts' founder. As the casket came he raised his neck, pricked his ears and stood perfectly square at salute with a veteran holding him. On that day there was a sadness in his eye as if he somehow knew the impact of the heavy call of duty.

Recognized for his accomplishments by PATH International as the Equine of the Year and by the Horsemen's Council of Illinois as the recipient of the Dust Commander Award, Hank just gets better with age, constantly offering ways to serve harder. He works endlessly and softly every day with every person he meets - all heart - all try - always!