HOUSTON, TX — (Mar. 27, 2017).
A heartbreaking photo of a police officer laying in the street with a police horse after the animal was struck by a vehicle is going viral.
According to the Houston Chronicle online (chron.com), Charlotte is a 6-year-old Tennessee Walker ridden by Officer D. Herrejon of the Houston Police Department. Charlotte was in the street with the officer when she was startled by traffic noise behind her. She turned to the side, stepped into another lane, and was hit by a passing concrete truck.
Charlotte tragically did not survive the accident. As she lay in the street in her last moments, an officer laid down next to her to comfort and embrace her. A spokesperson for the Houston Police says that a bystander took the photo of the touching moment.
According to a Facebook post by the Animal Justice League, the officer pictured with Charlotte is not Officer Herrejon, who had been taken to a nearby hospital, but his partner, Officer Ronald Curry.
America Web Media reported that the Houston Police Department shared the following announcing Charlotte’s death:
“It is with heavy hearts that we announce the death of Charlotte, an HPD Mounted Patrol horse, who died in the line of duty this morning in a motor vehicle accident,” the department’s post reads.
“Charlotte came to HPD as an unstarted 2-year old Tennessee Walker from Oklahoma. She thrived in HPD Mounted Patrol’s barefoot and natural horsemanship programs. She passed her evaluation period with flying colors and was working the streets of Downtown Houston within a short time of being started under saddle.
“She loved her job and was always ready to go to work putting bad guys in jail or giving nuzzles to children. She served the citizens of Houston for 4 years. She will be missed.”
Rest in peace dear Charlotte. We offer our heartfelt prayers for Officer Herrejon and condolences to all at Houston Mounted.
Charlotte of the Mounted Unit, Houston, Texas. Image Source: Loreen Pantaleone who will be doing a painting of the fallen horse at iHeartHorses.