Horses Healing Hearts

Southern Eighths Farm teamed with Perfect Partners Equine, the All Veteran Parachute Team, and Operation Support Our Troops – America to host its Leap of Faith event on November 5th and 6th, 2018. Leap of Faith is a 3-day seminar that helps families of fallen service members (Gold Star families) to cope with grief and to live their lives in ways that honor the sacrifice of their loved ones. The Leap of Faith seminar culminates in a tandem parachute jump with the All Veteran Parachute Team.

During their visit to the Farm, Gold Star families were introduced to Joe and Penny Most and their horses, Tough and Wimpy. Joe and Penny demonstrated the importance of openness and trust when building a relationship with a horse. The horses then showed their skills as Joe and Penny guided them through demonstrations of running, jumping, and climbing. After the demonstration, Joe and Penny provided Gold Star family members with opportunities to exercise the horses and to experience the joy of bonding with them. The time spent by the Gold Star families with the horses showed that it is possible to find joy beyond grief.

“It’s amazing what a unique feeling you get when horses trust you and let you “communicate” with them. Overall it was such a great experience and I hope I get to go back.” –Whitney Hunter, Gold Star Spouse

Pati Martin introduces Joe & Penny Most, and their horses Tough & Wimpy in the arena.


Introductions can at first be awkward…


but time and trust establish bonds that help heal.


Penny demonstrates the horse’s jumping skills


Joe familiarizes Gold Star family members with the horses.


Meet “Buddy,” one of many unofficial ambassadors at Southern Eighths Farm.


United in friendship and healing