A teen who escaped the Fort McMurray wildfire on the back of her horse has been reunited with her horse back home, three long months later.
You may remember the viral photo depicting a teen riding her Palomino horse out of the Fort McMurray wildfires a few months ago. Jada Polem, just sixteen years old and from Fort McMurray, evacuated her horse, Mya, by simply riding her out of town.
Horse owners were left scrambling for enough trailer spaces to evacuate their horses, and some resorted to riding their horses through the evacuation. Polem's ride took three hours.
Polem managed to safely evacuate Mya to Whispering Boarding Stables in Darwell. Another of Polem's horses, Ellie, also took refuge at the same stable.
But now, three months later, the horses and Polem have returned home. Polem's house and barn were spared by the fire, but things are still far from normal for the town. The Clearwater Horse Club lost 21 barns to the wildfire, along with countless fence posts.
But Polem can take solace in knowing that all three of her horses - Mya, Ellie, and Cameo - are home again, safe and sound. The rebuilding process will be a long one, but having their pets and animals can be an important emotional support for Fort McMurray residents at this time.
The Fort McMurray wildfire is a vivid reminder of how quickly and how dramatically life can change. If you have animals, now is the time to give some thought to how you would evacuate them in an emergency. Having a solid plan in place can save you valuable time and ensure a successful evacuation.
All images by Ingrid Brunkhorst Hurrell via National Post