This Sunday’s Tennessean sports section had a sad photo on it’s front page. It was of a horse that had made it first to the finish line, taking Saturday’s Iroquois Steeplechase top honor. But winning jockey Brian Crowley soon realized the triumph in Nashville would take a tragic turn.
Arcadius, the champion horse of the 71st running of the Iroquois, made it to the winner’s circle, then suffered a pulmonary aneurysm and collapsed and died, to the horror of his rider and the fans looking on from the stands. The equine medical staff valiantly attempted to resuscitate Arcadius, but it was too late. The surprise and grief on the jockey’s face, as officials shuffled to get answers and make sense of the sudden turn of events, said everything to all who see the photo. It was a huge shock, to say the least.
Seeing tragedies like this, either in person or from afar, cause me to reflect about the fragility of life. Many times there are no answers to why bad stuff happens because some things come upon us in such random fashion. Even though Arcadius ran it’s last race Saturday, the horse obviously gave everything it had. Race chairman Dwight Hall said that a pulmonary aneurysm was unavoidable.
Like Arcadius, I want to go out of this world having given all of my energy, heart and strength toward the purpose for which God called me in this life. Arcadius is a hero in my book; a true show of virtue in a world where character seems to be diminishing. Our hats are off to both rider and champion today. Well done!