WUSS was the grandest of mares. Her presence was regal. The flicks of white in her face and the lovely curve of her ears would take your breath away.

Wuss came to West Virginia Horse Network in Fall 2015. She lived in the southern part of the state. We were contacted by a humane officer there and asked to accept her. She had led a long and lovely life with her family. But when her owner passed away in April 2015 her remaining family needed to find a place for Wuss to live out her years.

We noticed shortly after she arrived that Wuss had a lip tattoo. We contacted the US Trotting Horse Association for help tracking her information. She was foaled in Lexington, KY on May 19, 1984. She, as long as she remained in the US Trotting Association registry, never birthed any foals, and never raced. She was, however, the granddaughter of a racing legend. Her grandsire was Armbro Nesbit, a champion pacer, who was inducted into the Canadian Horse Racing Hall of Fame in 1977. Her sire was Armbro Voltage, also a racer.

Learning this information brought a great deal of joy to Wuss's extended family. They've kept up with her journey with us throughout. We've enjoyed the rare opportunity to have real history on a horse that is in our program.

Upon learning of her pedigree the family shared this exchange in the comments of the post:

"Soon as I read it I could imagine dad saying I told ya so. You know he is getting a kick out of this one. I was only one year off on her age though."

"Poppy always said she was a fine race horse, and y'all didn't believe him. Lol."

"If I remember right he got her off a man who didn't have time for her, the man must have told him about this because he always said she was a fine racing horse. When she was younger she used to be rode all the time but was very picky who got on her, she had a mind of her own. The only racing she ever did here was bringing dad home from a weekend ride or to the feed bucket. Lol"

"She was a fine ride. My daughter and I rode her quite a few times when we first moved here. Wuss and my horse rode real well together."

The above comments from Wuss's lifelong family show how much she meant to her owner and his family. How truly lucky she was.

Here are a few more from her family today when we told them that she had passed on.

The family shared tales of the rides Boog (her former owner) took her on. The furthest one to Huntington. How she would come to their door every day looking to be fed. How she would follow the kids up the hollow after they got off the bus years ago. They fondly remember her as gentle old soul.

Since Wuss came to WVHN she won the hearts of so many.

After a long time of fostering with our board member Deb she went to foster with our long time supporter Germaine...who warmly refers to Wuss as a Queen.

She also spent this past summer in foster with the Booher family in the lovely fields with their other horses. Although the elder of the bunch she ruled things there and kept the other horses in line. As they'd gallop and play she'd pace right behind them.

When Wuss returned to our main barn to stay warm during the winter months she quickly befriended Adalein...who is also 33 years old. Those mares went everywhere together.

Wuss loved to be groomed and walked and fussed over by volunteers of all ages. The sound of her absolute demands to be fed instantly the minute someone walked in the barn became part of the barn experience. Try leading her anywhere and you'd better prepare for quite the trip as she was always in a hurry and 100% sure of where she was going...even if it didn't align with your plans.

We'd talk to her and ask her what happened to her ears. As lovely as she is....she had perhaps the best "mare face" I've ever seen...able to pin her ears back so far they disappeared and warn any horse (other than Addy) who got in her path that they'd surely better move out of her space. If she and Addy were in the round pen together while we were riding she'd stalk those riding by like a shark. She kept us laughing every minute with her larger than life personality.

Wuss was laid to rest today.

Our veterinarian came to help her pass this morning. We are thankful to two special volunteers who were by her side during that time. Also to our volunteers who showed her beautiful love the night before. And to the countless volunteers, fosters and her long time sponsor who made her time with us full of love, fun and excellent care.

As a comfort to myself and to those who loved her...I'll chose to smile today knowing that she is now reunited with her owner - in Heaven - she was always his anyway. We are just so thankful the family gave us the privilege of knowing this one of a kind horse.

You will be missed by so many but we know you are now running (or pacing) free.

WUSS May 19, 1984 - February 16, 2017