What an amazing opportunity has occurred within the PVDA and our community at large to combine a sport that many love with the opportunity to do something wonderful toward the fight for a Breast Cancer cure. This is why I, an amateur dressage rider, have chosen for the past four years to participate in and support financially as well as through volunteer efforts the PVDA Ride for Life. I lost a very dear friend Bari Von Beudingen, some years ago to breast cancer. This friend helped to introduce me to the world of breeding Hanoverian horses, helped me to find good mares, helped me to find the right stallions and breeding lines and encouraged me in my breeding and in my neophyte pursuit of dressage. She even gave me one of the thrills of my life when she allowed me to ride in the warm up area at Dressage at Devon, her Grand Prix horse that she was showing there. I had no idea what I was doing and she talked me through flying changes, passage and other movements that were merely terms that I was learning at that time. How kind of her to entrust her special horse to my inexperience. Bari was misdiagnosed, initially being told that all the mammograms and tests indicated there was not a problem. Unfortunately, 6 months later, and through many additional tests it was proved that the initial tests were incorrect. Six months later, despite a courageous battle and the use of experimental procedures, she lost her fight and her life.
Because of this experience and in honor of my dear friend Bari and to help support better diagnosis and ultimately cure for breast cancer, I have been given the courage and the drive to approach people and unabashedly ask for money to support the Ride for Life. As such I feel privileged to be part of an important future and am proud to be able to take my passions for dressage and my horses and direct it toward my passion to fight breast cancer.