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Friends Can Saddle Up In Deb’s Memory

By Staff | Sep 9, 2009

Debbie Henderson, pictured, is memorialized in annual fund raising ride.


A love of horses, riding, and the outdoors is just a bit of what the late Debbie Henderson cherished in life, along with a strong love of her family, particularly her daughter Hannah.

Henderson was involved in many horse activities that involved 4-H and was a member of the West Virginia Horse and Mule Association. Those connections made her part of a close-knit family with a common love of horses.

Those “family” members were some of her biggest supporters while she waged a five-year-long battle with inflammatory breast cancer. Although she lost that battle on Oct. 9, 2006, her friends, family, and community supporters still carry on her memory with a nonprofit organization called, “Deb’s Gang of Hope.”

This nonprofit organization helps support those who are now battling cancer with their annual trail ride fund raiser. This money stays locally in Wetzel County to help those in need of financial assistance in many ways.

This year’s trail ride is scheduled for Sept. 19 at Carney Run, near Wileyville, at the Lloyd Wood farm. The ride will begin at 10:30 a.m. and will cost $10 per rider which will include a chicken dinner. For children ages 16 and younger, there is no charge to trail ride. There will be plenty of room for your horse trailer to unload and saddle up at the Wood farm.

If you are not into trail riding, come and enjoy the day’s activities, including a homemade chicken roast dinner from 11-4 p.m. for a price of $6. Also included in the day’s activities will be a pony pull at 1 p.m., door prizes, and entertainment slated that day.

Country music will be starting at 11 a.m. including the The Back Porch Boys. There will also be karaoke that evening by Pat Henderson’s, Karaoke Konnection.

A quilt top raffle will be held. Doris Yeater and Nancy Ray, known for their fine quilting skills, created the quilt top that displays the breast cancer ribbon pattern.

This is the third annual fund raising trail ride. Rose Baker, an organizer and friend of the late Henderson, stressed, “This money stays in Wetzel County and it is to assist in many ways that people may not realize. Things are purchased like gas cards, to help people drive to their cancer treatments; money for hotel expenses; wigs for those who lost their hair because of treatments; and to even buying security lock boxes to hold the cancer patient’s medication.” Baker expressed they have given a total of $2,500 this year to help those in need.

The late Debbie Henderson herself loved to trail ride and was helped tremendously by family and friends in her battle of cancer, so Deb’s Gang of Hope will continue her memory while establishing funding to help all those in Wetzel County with cancer.

For directions or more information on this trail ride, or to just donate to this nonprofit organization, call Rose Baker at (304) 775-2340. Signs will be posted in the Silver Hill and Wileyville areas with directions.