Monday, September 14, 2009

Trailer hitch broke, causing the accident. WONIT ONA RV VERSION Dies


The American Quarter Horse Journal, September 14, 2009 -- 2009 Bayer Select showmanship world champion Wonit Ona RV Version died in an early Saturday morning trailer crash. The gelding, the 2008 all-around amateur high-point horse, was owned by Ronnie and Vickie Kent of Graceville, Florida. His traveling companion, Ill Be RV Radical, who was the 2009 Bayer Select trail world champion, was critically injured in the wreck and is recovering at a veterinary hospital near College Station, Texas.

The Kents were enroute to California when the trailer hitch broke, causing the accident.

The American Quarter Horse Journal spoke with Vickie Kent.

A Horseman’s Nightmare

September 14, 2009

Ronnie and Vickie Kent lost 2009 Select showmanship world champion Wonit Ona RV Version in a tragic trailer accident.

“The hitch broke in two,” Vickie said quietly. Anyone who has hauled horses down the road can envision the nightmare of what happened next.

It was not long after midnight Saturday, September 12, 2009. Ronnie and Vickie Kent of Graceville, Florida, were on Interstate 20 about 40 miles outside of Midland/Odessa, Texas, trying to make El Paso to layover. Seasoned haulers, they had slept part of Friday and were well-rested.

Their gelding, Wonit Ona RV Version, and mare, Ill Be RV Radical, were in the bumper-pull trailer behind the motor coach. The Kents were headed to show in Santa Barbara, California, having taken a short break after a successful Bayer Select World Championship Show the week before – Vickie and “Version” won the Select showmanship world championship, and Ronnie and “BeBe” had won the Select trail title.

Vickie was driving slower through a work area when she saw the trailer suddenly swing around into the median and roll. There was nothing she could do but cry out. The hitch had snapped like a pencil.

Emergency crews were soon on the scene and did their best to help the horses with what equipment they had. They managed to get a rope around Version and pulled him out. They were then able to get the trailer upright and BeBe stumbled out, with severe lacerations on her legs. But Version died shortly after.

“He never quit trying, right up to the end,” Vickie said, her voice cracking. “He was such a big-hearted horse; just gave all he had. He was truly a great horse.”

A state trooper offered his two-horse trailer and hauled BeBe to Karl Brock’s, D.V.M., Brock Veterinary Clinic in Lamesa, Texas, about 45 miles north of the accident site.

“They did a great job of taking care of her and getting her stitched up and bandaged,” said Robin Frid, the Kents’ trainer.

Robin arrived in Lamesa at 7:30 a.m. after driving through the night; the Kents had called just after the accident.

“I’m sure we can credit (Brock) with saving her. They did a phenomenal job,” Robin said.

Brock recommended sending BeBe to Cliff Honnas, D.V.M., in Bryan, Texas.

“Their biggest concern was getting her to a specialist,” Robin said. “I said, ‘If you tell me she can make the trip, we’ll get her there.’”

He was on the road with BeBe by 9:30 a.m.

According to Robin, BeBe didn’t balk to get on a trailer again, although she moved slowly and paused to look at the doorway. Through the entire treatment process in Lamesa and Bryan, she remained calm.

“She loves being pampered on, brushing her, combing her tail,” Robin said. “And it was the same when they were working on her. She didn’t move at all. She was a perfect young lady, never fussed, considering the pain she had to be in.”

As of September 14, BeBe is hanging on.

“From what they can tell so far, there is no (internal) traumatic injury,” Robin said. “She does have lacerations on her, one in particular on her left hind leg that they are really worried about infection possibly setting in. And that’s kind of where they are right now.”

The Kents are staying in College Station, Texas, until BeBe is in the clear. Ronnie has been hand-walking her to graze. The Kents’ home-raised horses are family to them – BeBe and Version are both out of Vickie’s former show mare, Ill Be Dun Won It. Among the many showing successes they’ve had with both horses include Vickie and Version winning the 2008 Featherlite all-around amateur high-point award.

“I would like to thank everybody for their prayers and concerns,” Vickie said. “We’ve gotten tons of e-mails and calls. We’re both overwhelmed. It was a nightmare; I can’t quit thinking about it.”

She paused for a moment.

“I don’t think anyone knew just what a wonderful horse (Version) was. He always gave 100 percent, no matter what it was. He covered up a lot of my mistakes.

“We won’t give up,” she said. “Somehow, we’ll keep going. It won’t be the same. You won’t lose us.”

Christine Hamilton
American Quarter Horse Journal

1 comment:

Griffin said...

Truly a nightmare come true. My prayers are with you and all of us who put thier horses in a trailer. Sush a beautiful horse, wasn't he just on the cover of Jeffer's catalog?