Heartfelt thanks shared

Independence saddle benefits son


Local therapeutic Discovery Riders program representatives provided a slideshow at Monday’s meeting of the Bellefontaine Rotary Club detailing facets of the program and the Independence Saddle, shown above. A grant from the local club helped purchase the $5,000 saddle. (PHOTO | DISCOVERY RIDERS)

A father and son attended Monday’s Bellefontaine Rotary Club meeting to thank club members for their generosity.

Champaign County resident Mike Stewart became emotional as he expressed gratitude for the club’s donation of a $1,500 grant last year to aid the purchase by Discovery Riders, 5850 S. State Route 292, Zanesfield, of a special saddle that has benefited his son, David.

David, 26, who is afflicted with cerebral palsy and is wheelchair-bound, had to be attended by about six staff members while riding a horse before the $5,000 Independence Saddle became available. The new saddle has special side supports and requires only two staff members as a precaution.

Mr. Stewart said he believes David, who is considered to be 10 to 14 months of age developmentally, recognizes he is more independent now because of the device.

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