Saturday, July 27, 2013
Saying goodbye to Ronnie
The second half of Shadow Ranch's mission statement is "to make a positive difference in the lives of our staff, volunteers and community". In following this part of the mission statement we have created an organization that is our own little world and as much a family as it is a business. So it is with mixed emotions that I write this.
Today is Ronnie's last day.
We are going to miss him terribly, but know he is going where he needs to be.
Ronnie came to us as a volunteer via Workforce Solutions. He had lost his job as a school teacher and these folks were helping him. One of the things they require is that anyone they help (while still unemployed) must put in volunteer hours at a local nonprofit. That's how he found us.
Ronnie had been exposed to show horses through his wife and mother-in-law, but had never worked with therapy horses so some of what we do he was familiar with, but a lot was not. I don't know that he had ever been an actual "ranch hand", but he worked hard and put his whole heart into everything he did.
Sometimes the horses took advantage of him, because when they see him all they see is a huge heart carrying a feed bucket. He would do anything we asked of him and 99% of the time he did it with a smile on his face. Even when we were picking up hay out of the hay meadow in 100 degree heat. There was Ronnie, sweating like the rest of us, but with no complaints and a smile on his face.
However, Ronnie is an academic. He was born to teach. It is his passion and what he is good at.
Ships pass in the night and people go on with their lives. Ronnie, thank you for touching our lives and sharing your heart with ours. Thank you for all the hard work and the smiles. We wish you success and all the joy that life has to offer. If you're in the neighborhood please, please stop in and let us know how it's going.