River Point Stables horse owner reacts to tragedy - KSLA News 12 Shreveport, Louisiana News Weather & Sports

River Point Stables horse owner reacts to tragedy

Madison Smith has spent more than half her life riding and competing with different horses from the River Point Stables Madison Smith has spent more than half her life riding and competing with different horses from the River Point Stables
HAUGHTON, LA (KSLA) -

Madison Smith says her heart breaks for her friends who are mourning the loss of their horses in Thursday's fire. She says for horse owners, losing the animals can feel like losing a member of your family.


The 21-year-old young woman has spent more than half her life riding and competing with different horses from the River Point Stables, where her two horses, Hester and Captain Jack stay. The very same place that turned into a massive inferno Thursday evening, sending a shock to her system.  "I didn't know for two hours if my horses were safe," said Smith. 

While Smith's horses were hundreds of yards away from the tragedy, her heart still hurts for the 19 horses lost in the fire. She also feels for their owners and caregivers, many of whom she's known since she was seven, riding race horses that aged out or never made it to the track.  

"It's still so upsetting because I know these people, I know these horses," said Smith and tells KSLA News 12, she spent much of the night comforting other horse owners and watching firefighters put out the flames. Investigators have determined the fire was caused by an electrical issue with an air conditioning unit or breaker box. State fire Marshall and the Bossier Sheriff's Office say they feel confident that the fire was accidental. " It's terrifying because it could have been my horses or it could have been all of the barns then you never know," said Smith and adds the owners who lost horses are going through a tough time, many cared for them like the animals were part of their family.

Friday morning, when the sun rose over the burned out barn, Smith rode her horse with a new perspective and renewed love. "You have to cherish every ride that you get, I learned that the hard way, knowing your horse can die at any moment," she said. 

A Bossier Sheriff's Office Spokesman says the remains of the horses have been removed from the rubble and will be buried somewhere else.  

 

Copyright 2013 KSLA. All rights reserved.

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