After the wildfire flared up again on Monday, Phyllis Bunch returned from Kansas and decided it was time to move her cherished thoroughbreds.
She and her five fine-looking fillies live on 15 acres near the fire zone in Logan County. Bunch doesn’t own a trailer because she didn’t plan on moving her horses.
Bunch called Edmond’s Equine Medical Associates where a staff member said she had a connection for getting her horses moved. Members of Oklahoma Large Animal First Responders, an Edmond-based organization transported her horses to the Lazy E Arena.
Lazy E Arena General Manager Dan Wall said his heart sank when he saw the wildfire, believed to have started about 2 miles away from the arena Sunday. Wall said he called the owner to say he wanted to do anything he could to help. Staff including a veterinarian were made available. Lazy E opened doors to its contestant stalls for displaced horses or other animals including goats and pets.
“The Lazy E is a big family,” Walls said. “The first thing that we can do is to try and help our neighbors and the people impacted by this just as we would family.”
The generosity toward animals displaced by the wildfire didn’t stop with Oklahoma Large Animal First Responders. One of Bunch’s horses received veterinary care from Edmond’s Equine Medical Associates. Oklahoma State University personnel also were ready to help. Other area neighbors illustrated “the Oklahoma standard.”
Clayton McCook, an associate veterinarian with Equine Sports Medicine and Surgery and vice chair of Oklahoma Large Animal First Responders, was there caring for the horses as they were led from their stalls to trailers by other volunteers. The organization was formed after members saw the carnage brought upon animals in Moore by the May 20, 2013, tornado.
Wall said seeing Bunch reunited with her horses was a heart-warming experience.
For more information about Oklahoma Large Animal First Responders, visit their Facebook page.
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