A true story about a recent loss.

in story •  2 months ago

Warning, does contain some graphic imagery.


It's during the quieter moments when my mind wanders that the memories return. The blue flashing lights, the 4am knock at the door. These aren't good memories by any stretch of the imagination, but they are memories that have changed my life and to be honest, because of them, I will never be the same again.

We aren't that sure how she escaped; the paddock was completely surrounded by electrical fencing with enough 'bite' in it to stop the most determined of horses. She had never tried to escape before and seemed completely content with her surroundings. Even after the event, the fencing seemed untouched. However, she did escape, and even though it's not our fault we will probably never forgive ourselves for what happened.

The driver was probably speeding. We have no real proof of this as no police investigation was forthcoming. A horse in a road traffic accident does not garner the same level of importance from the police as a human, but the damage caused to her is, without any doubt, due to someone going more than 40 mph.

Fair enough, it was 4 am, it was dark, but we live on a road with pretty much open fields surrounding us. A horse in the road is not something you should miss, even in the dead of night with your headlights on if you are doing a safe and legal speed. Our road is renound for being a bit of a drag strip though, not that that is any excuse for this particular incident.

Walking out into that scene with just my pyjamas on was something akin to what you would only expect to see on a TV show or blockbuster movie. This wasn't fiction though. With only the blue lights of the police to expose the situation in front of me, it was hard to grasp exactly what had happened. The policewoman asked me if it was my horse and as I approached, to be honest, I didn't even know how to tell. The darkness enveloped her body and the flashing lights made it hard to adjust my eyes properly. I didn't really want them to adjust, I had already seen enough; the blue lights reflected off the road in ways that they shouldn't do after weeks of dry weather. I had to walk back though my house, past my despairing wife and out into the paddock with a torch to scour the two acres in the ever dwindling hope of finding her.

Hope faded.

She wasn't there.

The walk back through the house was harrowing. My wife was in pieces, more so after I looked her in the eye, not having to communicate anything more to her than a shake of the head with tears in my eyes.

Back on the road, I had to walk past Banner in order to approach the police. It was at this point that I saw the full extent of her injuries for the first time. I figure that she must have walked into the road with her head down, sniffing at the ground or something. Probably the only comfort that we took away from this whole thing is that she wouldn't have felt a thing. It's another reason why we believe that the driver was going extremely fast. I only realised exactly what had happened as I walked another twenty meters along the road and saw the one image in my life that I really wish I could un-see. It has taken me weeks to try to stop seeing it and I still have moments where it comes back, although they are more and more fleeting now thankfully.

After confirming with the police that this was our horse, we had the difficult task of dealing with the logistics of what was happening at the height of our grief. Obviously, getting the road open was the police's priority at this time but doing so at 4 am wasn't easy. Environmental Health didn't want to help, so we had to wake up a friend of ours who owns a tractor to move her body to somewhere safe while we waited for "Peaceful Pets" to come and collect her, and the police called the fire service to help clean up the road.

It was one of the most traumatic times in my life if I'm honest and after the year I've had, was certainly not welcome. We lost our other horse in February due to old age, lost our beautiful dog, Barnie at the ripe old age of 14 shortly after as well as having a miscarriage earlier in the year. Sometimes you have to wonder if there is such a thing as a previous life, in which you have done something really bad.

Our house is now up for sale. We can't bear to be here any more. Even going out of the house is a chore as neither of us want to drive on the section of road where this happened. That normally means a diversion of a few miles to get to where we want to go to and that sort of disruption is unsustainable. We also have a lot of land that now goes unused. Getting out of here is our utmost priority. The pain associated with this place is too much.

Rest in peace Banner. You are missed.


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Wow that is a photographic masterpiece.

Our house is now up for sale. We can't bear to be here any more. Even going out of the house is a chore as neither of us want to drive on the section of road where this happened.

Selling the house is an extreme measure. If Banner's loss is the sole reason for your move, consider counseling or inverting the moral imperative: stay at this residence in honor of the majestic Banner.


It's not the sole reason. We now have a lot of land that isnt being used and we can effectively cut down the size of our mortgage by moving to the equivalent house without the land.


Makes sense. Best of luck with the move.

My heart breaks for you reading this, I know it’s something that took quite a lot of courage to even share... and things you are still trying to process on a daily basis.

While I don’t think there is a reason that you have had to deal the hurt and loss you have this year, I know you are strong enough to get through this. You’re an amazing human being, you’ve done nothing to deserve this.. in some past life or this one.. life sometimes just doesn’t make sense.

I hope you sell the house quickly so you and your family can begin to heal.. and I’m glad you have a couple of bundles of cuteness to make sure you smile each day. You and your family are in my thoughts, and I hope you all soon get the peace you deserve. ❤️

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Sorry man, this sounds like a horrible experience and I don't blame you and the family for wanting to move away from this area.

I hear RTA's are the worst, and hope to never picture what you have.

Good luck finding a new spot, hopefully brighter times ahead.


Yeah, it has been horrible and has taken my a while to get my head around the whole thing.

This little fella has helped a lot



He looks keen for a game of fetch!

Oh man, that sounds horrific. Banner looked like a beautiful and fine horse. Hope you find peace in your next home.

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aw man I know this was probably tough to write. That is a lot to go through all in a short time. All my love to you and your fam


Not really a feel bad story, more of a feel sad story. :(
It was a pretty horse and obviously meant a lot to you, but i still think moving houses because of it is a bit excessive (if you are serious about it).
Animals die, we outlive most of them. I lost my cat of 8 years, hit by a car, and i loved that bastard. Found him on the street, looking at him like that and having to bury him really was devastating.
But you accept that life is what it is and you try and deal with it.


Yeah, its not the only reason we are moving, been here 10 years now and without the horses, we have no need for the land and the associated stables etc. We have always said we will move when the horses are gone, so now is the time.

Really sorry to hear that. Loosing animals is always super hard. I agree sometimes you just need a scenery change to get things back in order.

Oh man, that's hard core... It made me remember the time I saw my cat on the side of the road when I was a kid. Not a good day...

So sorry for your loss. I know how hard it can be loosing pets. Is that puppy of yours a Saint Bernard? I have a mixed breed Saint Bernard and she is the best, so loving and loyal.


Yeah, he is a saint. You can check him out on @mallorystbernard :)

The best selfie ever. RIP banner