Nothing in the world is worth having or worth doing unless it means effort, pain, and difficulty. -Teddy Roosevelt
Here is where we stand this morning. After talking with the Two T Ranch and discussing multiple options, the best and safest option for Gus is to let him heal up completely. The culprit that caused his scalding was not the heat or saddle fit but the material in the first blanket I used. The acrylic in the blanket became abrasive during the long hours and day after day riding, by the time I was able to get the 100% wool blanket I needed the scalding was already there.
We believe it could take several more weeks if not months to let Gus fully heal, that’s just the way scalding goes once it sets in. At this time I do not have a remount that I had hoped I’d have. Remember horses are not motorcycles.
This additional time down for Gus’s well being will prevent us from completing the ride by October like we had hoped and planned for.
Our way forward: Kenny and I, along with the rest of our team, have decided to turn Expedition Orange into a multi year journey for awareness. Each year we will return where we left off and complete a 2-3 week ride heading toward Washington DC. Our goal is to conduct a campaign style ride where our supporters who want to ride with us will have the time to schedule the ride into their calendar and join us on the trail. It will also give us a better opportunity to reach out to local veterans, meet them and hear their stories. In addition, it will give us more time to raise the resources necessary to properly document this journey for future generations that need to learn about and remember these heroes’ struggles and sacrifices. Remember, this ride is not about a cowboy just riding a horse across the USA, its a journey to bring awareness to an issue, an issue that has for to long been in the shadows of society,
Currently, Expedition Orange has successfully carried the message of the struggle our Vietnam veterans suffering from Agent Orange exposure are facing. We have safely ridden through two states on horseback and into a third. We have done this not on our own but with the support of people like you who follow us daily.
With that said, during our down months Expedition Orange will continue the mission of awareness. We will travel to veteran homes with Gus once a month handing out the Orange Bandanas that have been signed. I promise you this campaign will have a lasting impact on our veterans that are suffering, Kenny, Gus and I have already seen it in action out in the field.
We will also be attending events that we get invited to. Currently we have accepted an offer to attend the Buckeye Classic in Ohio hosted by the OQHA (Ohio Quarter Horse Association.) This event alone will give our Vietnam Veteran’s stories and struggles exposure to 33 states and 5 countries.
I couldn’t be more proud of my team here at Expedition Orange. Kenny, Gus and myself love you all and we hope we continue to make you proud even when we have to adjust for fire! We will continue to keep you updated every Thursday via our normal Facebook live and daily as things develop.
From all of us at Expedition Orange, Thank you and Welcome Home.