I wanted to post this in memory of a great horse I used to ride and lease when I was little. He was my best friend and taught me a ton.
He was a grulla AQHA gelding named Dixie Don Bruce, and went by the name of Dixie. He was 15.3hh or so...
He was extremely stubborn and barn sour, but took excellent care of me in my very young age and inexperience at the time. I rode him all over the place.
Here we are back when I rode him (I was sure ratty, eh? And look at that bounce at the lope, what a saint he was):
Ignore the flymask, he had an eye issue that required extra sun protection at all times..
And here he is in his later retired years:
And here is a video of him just a short time before his passing, actually..
His owner took absolutely excellent care of him over the years. He passed on December 7th of 2007 at the age of 26 after receiving an extremely serious injury to his fetlock joint. His owner tried her hardest to treat it, but it became infected beyond what could be fixed without extremely expensive surgery. He was put down.
RIP to a great friend and outstanding mentor.