A Tornado Survivor

Thanks to rescuers, this mare survived the tornado in Moore, Oklahoma.

The American Quarter Horse Journal
May 23, 2013

JRS Hustlers Jewel

American Quarter Horse "Jewel" was found injured but alive after the Moore, Oklahoma, tornado.

Editor’s Note: Through a series of emails, Dr. Wade McCoy, a doctor in Oklahoma City, tells us the story of his daughter, Anna’s, mare who survived the May 21 tornado near Oklahoma City. Here is JRS Hustlers Jewel’s story through her owner’s words:

Our Quarter Horse, “Jewel,” survived the EF-5 tornado in Moore, Oklahoma. Her best friend, “CD,” died. We only knew her as CD. Jewel and CD spent every day together in the same field before being put back into their stalls. CD was younger than Jewel. She was a brown mare and was a sweet, friendly horse. She had competed and won a cutting competition several months ago.

We live in Northwest Oklahoma City, but boarded Jewel at Lynn and Bonita Laske's place near Southwest 149th and May Ave. Her registered name is JRS Hustlers Jewel. She was born March 27, 2002. She is a gray mare. Her great-grandfathers include Jewel's Leo Bars, Doc O'Lena and Colonel Freckles, among others. She is well trained in cutting and loves to work cattle. My daughter is 12 years old and enjoys riding and has done some cutting training.

The Laskes’ place was completely destroyed; their house had part of the roof destroyed.

We had to take back roads to get into Moore. The police let us through two road blocks to rescue Jewel.

Lynn’s employee, Louis, had to dig our horse out from under the rubble. It was difficult for him to get her out. Then she was not being cooperative because she was in shock, but he finally was able to get a halter on her. Some neighbors came over and helped. When we got there, Jewel was the only horse outside of a trailer. All the others were taken to the vet or in a trailer to be taken to another farm. Jewel was standing in their yard being held by the lead rope when we got there. Their neighbor had stood there with her.

When we got to her, she was covered with mud and in shock. We didn't even recognize her. Some of Lynn's friends were taking care of her and a vet had already given her pain meds to help ease her suffering.

Jewel is recovering at the Oklahoma City Equine Clinic. She did not require any surgery but had a huge gash in her abdomen, an eye injury that is improving, and some deep leg wounds. The vet describes her as a "sweet girl, we like having her here."

When my daughter saw Jewel, she said, "I just want to sit here with her in the stall until she gets well.”

We owe a lot to many people for Jewel being alive. We were praying she was alive and would live and heal. We continue to pray for her healing. We are grateful to friends that helped us find the vet and supplied us with a trailer to get Jewel to the vet.

Also, Anna's trainer, Bob, helped a great deal with the rescue. He is from Canada. He comes here and spends time with the Laske family. He is a wonderful man. He lost his pickup and high-end trailer in the tornado.

Bob taught me that God put horses here to work for man and we are entrusted with them to give them the best care and respect they deserve. He and Lynn have won many cutting competitions through the years. And Bonita has done a great deal of cutting competitions as well, with many wins.

I share all this to emphasize how important horses are to their owners. That probably goes without saying to the members of the Quarter Horse association. But it is good to be reminded to be grateful for our healthy animals every day because they can be gone within a few minutes.

And I might add, I am not much of a horseman even though I grew up on a farm in western Oklahoma. I have learned with Anna and my wife, Sarah, what amazing animals horses are. We "ask" them to perform and work for us as we ride. And a well-trained horse does just what we ask. How can we not love them and care for them like family. I have learned they are amazingly smart and clever animals. They enjoy the work and the relationship it seems to me.

Relief Efforts
AQHA is collecting non-perishable items for the tornado victims of Oklahoma May 22-24 at AQHA Headquarters in Amarillo. Donations may be dropped off at AQHA Headquarters on the corner of I-40 and Quarter Horse Drive. All donations will be delivered to Oklahoma on May 25. For information on donating and items accepted, please contact AQHA at (806) 378-4742.

Racing horsemen affected by the storm and in need of help are urged to call the Oklahoma Quarter Horse Racing Association at (405) 640-2628 or (405) 623-3234. OQHRA and the Thoroughbred Racing Association of Oklahoma have set up a fund within their respective benevolence organizations. If you would like to make a monetary donation to the affected horseman, send a check to the OQHRA Benevolence Fund and write "tornado relief" in the memo. Send checks to:

P.O. Box 2907
Edmond, OK 73083

The Women's Horse Industry Network is raising funds to help horse owners in the affected areas. People who wish to make a donation to this effort can do so by visiting WHIN's web site at www.womenshorseindustry.com.

Donations can also be made to help the general relief effort:

*The Salvation Army: To make a $10 donation, text “storm” to 80888.

*The Red Cross: Make a donation to www.redcross.org/okc or www.redcross.org or texting REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation.

*United Way of Central Oklahoma’s Disaster Relief Fund is open. Donations may be made online at www.unitedwayokc.org.

*Contributions to the Moore & Shawnee Tornado Relief Fund can be made securely online at www.TulsaCF.org.