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Mare ‘assured’ a new home

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Rolando Romeo is a man filled with kindness and generosity. When he was young, he decided to place the needs of his country before his own life’s plans and ambitions. He served our country proudly during the Korean War, something that fills him with pride to this day.

Romeo has always been strong and independent and he loved riding the Appaloosa mare that he named Pancha around the countryside of Santa Fe. He trained Pancha to be his horse from the day she was born and he refers to her as his “pride and joy.” Unfortunately, Romeo’s riding days came to an abrupt end this year when he fell and broke his hip at age 84.

Rolando was determined to find his “pride and joy,” Pancha, a new home where she would be well cared for, loved and ridden, some place special. Then, he remembered hearing about a program in Roswell that took in teenage kids who needed guidance, help and a safe place to live, a home called Assurance.

He called the Assurance Home and offered to give the kids there his “pride and joy.” On Jan. 24, Assurance Home traveled to Santa Fe and brought Pancha back to be loved and enjoyed by the young people of Assurance Home. The 8-year-old mare has fit in nicely with the other horses at the home and is sure to give years of riding pleasure to the many “at risk” and homeless children who will reside in the program.

The horsemanship program at Assurance Home is only one of many therapeutic activities available for the children who live there. Assurance Home has been in operation since 1979 and is a United Way Agency. For more information, call Ron Malone, executive director, at 575-624-1780 or visit the website at assurancehome.org.

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