Panamas Sun is truly an All American, serving with the United States Army’s Morale, Welfare, and Recreation Program at Fort Bragg, North Carolina. This special horse serves in two official capacities: training and recreation. “Sun” directly impacts human welfare in providing training opportunities for our deploying soldiers and recreational opportunities for their families left behind. His responsibilities far exceed that of any horse in this community and country. A scarring injury in 1999 ended Sun’s show career and left him without a job until he was purchased for Fort Bragg. Sun, with his docile manner and positive work ethic, has proven himself to be a dedicated member of our Armed Forces community.
Sun provides a willing mount to train the elite United States Army Special Forces soldiers for equestrian missions in the Middle East during times of war. Learning equestrian skills enhances their mobility, safety and survival. Sun provides training opportunities for U.S. Army Special Forces Medics to learn livestock management skills such as immunizations, farrier science, and infection control skills as they provide both economic and humanitarian support during their global pursuits.
Sun, an unofficial Ambassador for the American Quarter Horse, provides recreational and learning opportunities for people of all social economic status at the only public equestrian facility in the North Carolina Sandhills. Unfortunately, the war on terrorism has taken a toll on Sun’s herd. Their green pastures were lost to military construction projects needed to support more soldiers for today’s missions. The designated turnout dually tasks as an air safety landing zone for the Army airfield. Reappropriations has diverted funding needed for pasture seeding, turnouts, fencing, tack, and even joint supplements for these aging equine soldiers.