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Storms damage several horse farms in Kentucky

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Thunderstorms and tornadoes that devastated parts of Kentucky on April 2, weakening or destroying some homes, also damaged the structures of several horse farms in Kentucky.

Hidden Rose Farm, a farm in Paris, Kentucky that offers boarding and camps for children and services for jumpers, hunters and dressage horses, was devastated by a storm that swept through the area Tuesday morning. According to farm owner and stable manager Chelsea Sherman, buildings and fences were destroyed and some of the approximately 45 horses living there were injured. No people were injured, she said.

Social media and online reports said barns at Ledgelands Farm, Polo Green Stable and Waugh Livestock Sales in Kentucky were also damaged.

Sherman described a chaotic scene during the storm in which horse trailers were thrown into the side of a barn on the property before an entire indoor arena collapsed. Sherman said she and other farm workers sheltering in a horse stall at a barn saw the roof “peeling away.”

She fled the barn and checked to see if her mother was safe in another part of the farm. She said: “We just watched the rest of the farm collapse in front of us and fly away. And then we just jumped out,” and you just go into emergency mode and catch all the injured horses. Every field and pasture on our property had a hole.”

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A damaged barn at Hidden Rose Farm
Photo: Maggie Garlock

A damaged barn at Hidden Rose Farm

Sherman, who arrived April 3, expressed her appreciation for the overwhelming support she has received from the equine community, which includes veterinarians as well as other farm owners and workers, including some involved in breeding Thoroughbred racehorses. On Wednesday, volunteers were out in large numbers, delivering supplies and working to rebuild the property. More than 100 people were at the farm Wednesday, Sherman said.

She said the veterinarian, Dr. Mallory Myers of the Hagyard Equine Medical Institute donated her time Tuesday to stitch up horses and that Park Equine did not charge for its veterinary services, including surgery on a pony named Kokoro that injured a tendon and ligament .

Sherman said some barns at Hidden Rose Farm were damaged but survived the storm, as did her home.

A GoFundMe fundraiser organized by equine photographer Laura Palazzolo and Thoroughbred breeder and consignor Carrie Brogden to help rebuild Hidden Rose Farm had raised over $46,000 in donations as of 11 a.m. ET Wednesday.

Another GoFundMe fundraiser aims to support the Waugh family of Waugh Livestock Sales.

-This story has been updated with additional reports of damaged farms.