Lilly (1985 – 2011)

Lilly (1985-2011)

Lilly died today.  Born January 20, 1985, at Cibolo, Texas, on the ranch of Janis Hawthorne, she had two issues, the last one being Star Bars Moore who remains on our ranch.

Lilly had osteoarthritis.  She had been down since yesterday for eighteen hours, but had come up for me this morning.  The vets were called at 8:00 a.m.  She had alfalfa and a natural sedative to lessen her pain before the vets arrived.  I told her I was beside her and not be afraid.  She was not.

Lilly has been with my family for eighteen years and our grandchildren have ridden her.  She carried my stepfather on trail rides for many years and Brenda rode her with great pleasure.

Her son, Star Bars Moore, watched at a distance as we put her down.  I had talked to him about what we were doing and he lowered his head, not so much about what I told him for he did not understand, but that I had come directly to him to talk in fair and caring tones.  He watched at a distance as I covered his mother in the good earth of this world.

We shall miss this fine horse.



Filed under Life in Balance, Lilly

44 responses to “Lilly (1985 – 2011)

  1. Jack and Brenda, my sincere sympathies. You’re in my thoughts.


  2. I was so sorry to hear of Lilly’s passing. Intellectually I know you know you did the right thing in letting her pass on in peace and with you. Every night I say to my mare, ” God bless you and the path that brought us together.” I will say that for Lilly today. You were blessed to have traveled the same path.

  3. I’m so sorry, Jack. She was beautiful.

    • Chris, I read your blog consistently and know that you sympathize in the deepest of ways. I have many memories from reading your work. And, what you did for Ivanapa is transcendent. If I had lived closer, I would have helped. Lilly was beautiful.

  4. Sorry to hear this news. May she rest in peace.

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  6. Semira

    Matthews family,

    My thoughts are with you. It’s certainly been a trying weekend. The Lord blessed us with the ability and privilege of relieving these fine animals of their pain. You did what was best for Lilly and she understood that.

  7. Caralee

    Oh, Jack, not the sale of the others and now this in just a few days’ time. Of course I’m crying for you. I’m so sorry. Jimmy and I know, we know so well. And by the way: don’t think for a minute that Star Bars Moore didn’t know what you told him. He knew exactly what you told him, and I’m sure he accepted it the way you told it to him. Now he knows where Lilly is, and why.

    When Max died, we had the other dogs and cats as they wished right there in the room with us. And we let them visit Max for a bit before carrying him to the pet graveyard. I recently had a communicator speak with Puck the cat, who needs some medical attention now, and she indicated he had some stress he was carrying for me. I asked her to ask him about Max. When she did, he just shut down in a way that was equal to leaving the room. They know, you know? They just don’t dread it the same way we do because they live moment to moment instead of in the future like we often do. It’s a lesson to learn from them.

    I know for sure the glass isn’t half full for you today. I know it’s just about empty. But it will refill. Put your love into Lilly’s son because he’ll need you more now. Then spend more time with the fun memories of Lilly and you’ll be better soon. She was a very beautiful horse, and I wish I’d met her.

    PS: Jimmy feels terrible, too. We miss you.

    • Thank you, Caralee, Jimmy. You are right, the glass is just about empty. We have sold three of our best and grandest and now Lilly. I will focus on Star. Tonight I took Yeller down for a visit with him. I never do that since Yeller is quite a home body, but he and Star seemed to hit it off. A lab/aussie mix and a paint. Trying to start a new routine. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for your comments. We learn from the animals, do we not?

  8. cottonwoodcenterforthearts

    So sorry. My heart is with you.

  9. Wendy

    Sorry for your loss Dad and Brenda. Lily was so special to all of us. She was a good horse and friend.

  10. Kay Gray Malone

    Another link with the past is broken.Many wonderful memories remain, tho. Losing Lilly is like a member of the family; and at her age and circumstances bittersweet. When the time finally comes, you know. It was like that with my Daisy, my wonderful loving lab. She knew and was ready and grateful. I believe our beloved animal friends do understand. Love to you and Brenda.

  11. So glad to know about this particular horse: Lilly! A beaut! (Like the “paints” the most in this part of my life – is that what she is considered to be?)
    In solidarity,

  12. Kittie Howard

    Dick and I send our condolences to the Matthews family, for everyone loved Lilly and will miss her dearly. Our hearts are with you, our tears salty for, even though Lilly was a four-legged animal, she was family, and a part of your family has left you. Intellectually, you know you did the right thing. Give the heart time to accept the reality. The Hawaiians have an exression (roughly translated): tears must fall, until there are no more tears to fall. Please know you don’t cry alone! Bless you!

  13. I’m very sorry for you loss Jack. Lilly lived a long and full life my friend and I’m sure the Lord has her on oats and carrots in a wide pasture to graze. For her it will be springtime in Texas all year around.


  14. I’m sorry, Jack. It was her time and she was very lucky that you were there!

    • Yes, it was her time. I had said that I would work with her until she couldn’t make on her own. The eighteen hours on the ground was the sign that it was time. Thank you, Montucky.

  15. How lucky Lily was to have spent her last 18 years with such caring people. And how lucky were you when she came to you?

    These have been hard times for your family Jack, my wish is that the rest of the year is bright and you can travel on happy trails.

    • Thank you, Bill. Your fine prose about nature is inspiring me to write with greater detail and clarity. I want to write a piece about the larger aspect of what my horses have done for me in the years I have had them. Yes, hard times. We go on. I hope your back is improving so that you can track through the snow up there in New England. There are happy trails there too. Thank you for your kind comments. As soon as I can get my classes going and feet under me a little better — horses “gather” themselves up — I want to read your work. Thanks, Bill.

  16. Randall Tate

    Jack I’m so sorry to hear about Lilly. I know you will miss her so much, and some mornings you will wonder where she at and then you will have that feeling and be sad for a moment and then remember the good times and what a good life you had given her and then smile . All my life I have regretted that I did not stay with Rusty my $.50 dog that I had for 17 years. I have his and my picture in the office. I was in the fourth grade and he’s about one year old in the picture.
    Once again I’m sorry for your loss.
    Randall Tate

  17. I’m so sorry to hear that sweet Lily has died.

  18. I am grieving for a horse I only knew through your love for her, but it’s enough, enough to know that a sweet being has passed from this life and she will be missed. My Best Thoughts to you and Brenda as you move through this valley…

    Days of sunshine and gladness lie ahead for all she meant to you and surely you to her.

  19. angiecook

    I can’t imagine how difficult it was for you to have to put down a family member like Lilly. On occasions like this, well-intended phrases such as “at least she’s no longer in pain” get tossed around like dust in the West Texas wind. But it’s nevertheless a difficult, painful decision to make. And her loss, undoubtedly, will affect you and Brenda for a long time to come. I’m so sorry for Lilly’s passing, Jack. Hang in there.

    • Thank you, Angie. She was a family member. Brenda gave Lilly a brushing to get off the soil for having been down eighteen hours and then came up to the house. I stayed and the vets came. Lilly looked grand despite her stiff arthritic legs. Her heart was strong; her legs were just too old to carry her.

  20. Erin R.

    You and your family and Star have my deepest sympathy Dr. Matthews. Poor Star it is terribly hard to lose your mother I know. Hopefully I will see you at school soon. Rest in peace Lily.

    • Erin, I hope to see you soon. At 12:45 today I went up to the second floor. My class isn’t up there this semester! I will make a point of seeing you soon to tell you about Lilly.

  21. Jack and Brenda
    I looked for words to say for your Lilly but this poems sums it up on the beauty of horse like Lilly.

    Where in this wide world can man find nobility without pride,
    Friendship without envy,
    Or beauty without vanity?
    Here, where grace is served with muscle
    And strength by gentleness confined
    She serves without servility; she has fought without enmity.
    There is nothing so powerful, nothing less violent.
    There is nothing so quick, nothing more patient.
    ~Ronald Duncan, “The Horse,” 1954

    This photo is link is my version of horse heaven

  22. Val Erde

    I’m so sorry that you lost Lilly. Hugs.

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