PINE ISLAND, Minn. (KTTC) -- For those who served or are serving our country, a special event was held in Pine Island to honor them.
RideAbility is an organization that helps children and adults with disabilities through horseback riding.
For the very first time, it teamed up with the national organization Horses4Heroes for "Operation Free Ride" as a way to thank the men and women who serve our country.
"I'm a veteran. Try to do something for veterans and their families," RideAbility Volunteer Joe Jacobi said.
Terry Buchholz attended the event on Wednesday afternoon.
Her father served in the Vietnam War.
"He does have memories from the war that are hard on him," Buchholz said.
"People with post-traumatic stress disorder a lot of times have a hard time relating to people. There's something special about their connection with horses that brings out some of the reluctance in them to be communicative," Jacobi said.
For some kids, it was their first time riding a horse--it's memories like this that loved ones overseas can't witness.
"The service members, as well as their families, give up a lot and it's easy to forget that people are serving right now all over the world and it's their efforts that keep us safe so we can enjoy what we've got," Jacobi said.
He went on to say, "It's just a way of saying thanks, we remember you."
"Operation Free Ride" included spirit painting (finger painting on a couple of horses), wagon rides, horse back riding games, trail riding on a sensory trail, and horse rides for those with special needs.
RideAbility hopes to team up with Horses4Heroes again.
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