America Supports You: Horses Help Veterans Earn Their Spurs
By Samantha L. Quigley
American Forces Press Service
WASHINGTON, Sept. 3, 2008 Based on the idea that with their grace, elegance and unconditional acceptance, horses may be just what many servicemembers and veterans need, a former Marine has formed an organization to introduce them to what he calls “the power of partnership with horses.”
“Horses have an incredible way of teaching and healing humans,” said Brad Myers, president of Operation Silver Spurs.
A third-generation veteran, Myers started the endeavor after consulting with a master therapeutic riding instructor. Operation Silver Spurs is open not only to all veterans, but also to active-duty personnel, reservists, Guardsmen and their families. It provides opportunities for these groups to benefit from interaction with the horses through seminars and demonstration events.
The organization also plans to host retreats and workshops for those interested in furthering their equine experience.
“One of the intangible results we have seen from our program has been the very unique networking and friendships formed [that bridge] generations of veterans,” Myers said. “We have several different generations in our organization, and they like to think of our program as ‘veterans helping veterans.’”
Operation Silver Spurs is a new supporter of America Supports You, a Defense Department program connecting citizens and companies with servicemembers and their families serving at home and abroad.