Anyone who has crossed paths with Andy would agree that he is often mischievous,
but always endearing. He captured the hearts of thousands in the audience at the Washington International Horse Show when he stole a carrot from the silver bucket being presented to him in center ring as the 2015 Klinger Award recipient. He does not think twice about breaking a fence or unhinging a door to go where he wants to go, which is often where the food is.
However, he transforms into the embodiment of honor and service when in the presence of adult and children with emotional, physical or cognitive challenges. Andy participates in various Equine Assisted Activities and Therapies at Loudoun Therapeutic Riding in Leesburg, Virginia – adaptive horseback riding, Hippotherapy, adaptive carriage driving, equine facilitated learning, trauma recovery and Equine Gestalt Coaching Method.
He adjusts his behavior depending on the setting, the client, and the therapeutic modality, and excels in all of them to make each session with him very special. He tunes into the needs of each participant with uncanny perception. He helps clients unearth deep awareness, freely offering them comfort and love resulting in many “Aha” moments for them.
Andy touches many lives in many different ways. Willingly carrying the physical and emotional weight of warriors returning home from war, an instructor observed, “I saw a grown man (veteran) cry while sitting on Andy’s back. He was finally able to ‘chill out’ and trust Andy enough to allow someone else to carry the weight of his burdens.”
Andy is always ready to loan his legs to his clients, including Cailyn who has quadruplegia which prevents her from walking so that she can get a glimpse of what walking feels like, and to pull Sam in the cart over the fields and through the water – places where Sam’s wheelchair cannot go.
Andy serves by choice and is the happiest when surrounded by his favorite kids and their wheelchairs, assistance dogs and colorful assistive devices. Being mischievous makes his service all the more meaningful – a true gift to all those who work with him and benefit from his work.
A Joint Program of the EQUUS Foundation and the United States Equestrian Federation CELEBRATING the extraordinary talent of horses and the magical bond between horses and people. HONORING the contributions of amazing horses, SHARING the stories of their athletic and humanitarian feats and BUILDING a more informed and compassionate America that values the impact of horses in our lives.
Horses are Extraordinary — as Athletes and Humanitarians.
Learn more about Loudoun Therapeutic Riding’s herd of therapy horses. Visit our horses page