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Tuesday, January 18, 2022

Horse photographed during martial fire is safe after rescue

Dotted with flames and engulfed in smoke near homes on a small street with no outlets, Colorado State Patrol Master Trooper Travis Hood and his fellow Trooper Shane Johnson began to think about their safety. They had arrived at the scene of the martial fire and heard crackling on the radio, alerting the houses on Dyer Road to the still rapidly growing fire.

“There was no access to the neighborhood by car,” Hood said. “So we stood on the side of Highway 36, jumped the fence and ran from house to house shouting for people to be evacuated.” But with winds of 100+ mph, the two were quickly cleared of smoke. He lost sight of his cruiser and was forced to take refuge in the corner of nearby houses. The jawans had to wait for about thirty minutes before enough smoke was released to return to their vehicles. “Our security was quickly compromised due to smoke, wind, dust and fire within seconds,” he said.

Outraged by how quickly the fire had caught them, the two soldiers from Adams County decided to turn south on Highway 36 to McCaslin Boulevard.

With fire from both sides, they slowly moved down the smoke-covered street, while the bangs of homes and businesses were heard on both sides. He crossed the large city of Superior Sign and then to his surprise saw a horse in the middle of a circular square that is usually a busy square. “Houses to the west were completely gutted, trees were on fire, embers were flying and stuff was exploding all around us,” Hood recalls. “Then I see a horse in the middle of it all. It took a while for my brain to process what was happening around us.”

Hood got out of his car to see what he could do to catch the horse. At first he drove away but as he turned towards his car, the horse started following him. “He came to me quietly as if wanting to be saved.”

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A fire truck stopped long enough to throw a utility rope out the window. “I don’t even know which department it was, but the rope was long enough to be put around the horse’s neck,” he said.

“I learned later that the horse was known to be shy, but because I thought he was scared and had trouble seeing I was able to walk carefully and there were no problems.”

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