Here’s a nice interview with Mark Miller about Al-Marah and their 3000 horses. He was a great friend of my Dad’s.
Sit back, relax and hear some of the stories from one of the premier Arabian farms in the world. They have done so much for horses … and people, too!!
The story of Reckless is not only remarkable – it is unusual. And once you learn about her, you will see why the Marine Corps not only fell in love with her – but honored her and promoted her every chance they got. And it wasn’t just the Marines that served with her in the trenches that honored her – her last promotion to Staff Sergeant was by Gen. Randolph McC Pate – the Commandant of the entire Marine Corps. You can’t get higher than that in the Marines.
Reckless joined the Marines to carry ammunition to the front lines for the 75mm Recoilless Rifle Platoon of the 5th Marines – and she quickly earned the love and respect of all of the Marines that served with her. Lt. Eric Pedersen paid $250 of his own money to a young Korean boy, Kim Huk Moon, for her. The only reason Kim sold his beloved horse was so he could buy an artificial leg for his older sister, Chung Soon, who lost her leg in a land mine accident.
Kim’s loss was the Marines’ gain.
It was not only Reckless’ heroics that endeared the Marines to her – it was her incredible antics off of the battlefield. You will not believe her antics when she was being ignored, or if she was hungry – let’s just say you never wanted to leave your food unattended. As legendary as she was for her heroics – her appetite became even more legendary. This horse had a mind of her own – not to mention, being very determined.
Reckless had a voracious appetite. She would eat anything and everything – but especially scrambled eggs and pancakes in the morning with her morning cup of coffee. She also loved cake, Hershey bars, candy from the C rations, and Coca Cola – even poker chips, blankets and hats when she was being ignored – or if she was trying to just prove a point.
One of Reckless’ finest hours came during the Battle of Outpost Vegas in March of 1953. At the time of this battle it was written that, “The savagery of the battle for the so-called Nevada Complex has never been equaled in Marine Corps history.” This particular battle “was to bring a cannonading and bombing seldom experienced in warfare … twenty-eight tons of bombs and hundreds of the largest shells turned the crest of Vegas into a smoking, death-pocked rubble.” And Reckless was in the middle of all of it.
Enemy soldiers could see her as she made her way across the deadly “no man’s land” rice paddies and up the steep 45-degree mountain trails that led to the firing sites. “It’s difficult to describe the elation and the boost in morale that little white-faced mare gave Marines as she outfoxed the enemy bringing vitally needed ammunition up the mountain,” Sgt. Maj. James E. Bobbitt recalled.
During this five-day battle, on one day alone she made 51 trips from the Ammunition Supply Point to the firing sites, 95% of the time by herself. She carried 386 rounds of ammunition (over 9,000 pounds – almost FIVE TONS! — of ammunition), walked over 35 miles through open rice paddies and up steep mountains with enemy fire coming in at the rate of 500 rounds per minute. And as she so often did, she would carry wounded soldiers down the mountain to safety, unload them, get reloaded with ammo, and off she would go back up to the guns. She also provided a shield for several Marines who were trapped trying to make their way up to the front line. Wounded twice, she didn’t let that stop or slow her down.
What she did in this battle not only earned her the respect of all that served with her, but it got her promoted to Sergeant. Her heroics defined the word “Marine.” She was BELOVED by the Marines. They took care of her better than they took care of themselves – throwing their flak jackets over her to protect her when incoming was heavy, risking their own safety.
Her Military Decorations include two Purple Hearts, Good Conduct Medal, Presidential Unit Citation with star, National Defense Service Medal, Korean Service Medal, United Nations Service Medal, Navy Unit Commendation, and Republic of Korea Presidential Unit Citation, all of which she wore proudly on her red and gold blanket, along with a French Fourragere that the 5th Marines earned in WW1.
There has never been a horse like Reckless, and her story deserves every honor and recognition she can receive.
Too hot to be busy but what choice do we have?? Someone has to get them fed and watered! Let’s head to the river …or better yet, the beach!
Did you see the video of the Arabian Nights sales last weekend?
The end of an era, kinda sad, but the horses are all going to great new homes!!!
Take a look and drop us a line on the forum when you get a second (or facebook, too)
If you haven’t seen this film yet – take a little time this evening to treat yourself to the spirit of the West and a cowboy’s passion.
The director of the movie says it best in her own words;
“When I first encountered Dayton Hyde he was living alone on 11,000 acres in the Black Hills of South Dakota, surrounded by the thundering hooves of horses and the music of song birds. His stories of the West and his passion for wildlife captivated me, and I knew I would be back to create a film about a man who found freedom in the horses he is saving. Twenty years later, Running Wild: The Life of Dayton O. Hyde captures the essence of a man who as a cowboy, a poet and an inspiration, has handed his heart over to the West. The film looks back on his rich, diverse life and looks forward to his legacy, opening the eyes of a new generation to the beauty and fragility of what is left of this natural landscape.”
Finally after waiting years the HD of “the Black Stallion” feature film is coming out on Blu-Ray! Yeah!
Coppola’s American Zoetrope / MGM 1979 Academy Award winning movie will be released on March 18, 2014 on Blu-ray disk. Carroll Ballard directed Kelly Reno, Mickey Rooney and a cast of classic stars in one of the most popular movies of all time. The critic Pauline Kael of the New Yorker wrote, “this may be the greatest children’s film of all time”.
As I had the honor of being able to work on the movie from the very first days, even before filming began, going around with Carroll and Dad to look for THE STALLION. What a long wonderful road it’s been.
So many of us have been asking for a HD version and it should look great on that huge flatscreen TV you are watching the Superbowl on tomorrow.
Once this comes out they may be inspired to put it together as a trilogy with “Black Stallion Returns” and “Young Black Stallion” as a set … or even better a TV mini series! We’re still working on getting that next feature, “Black Stallion Revolts“, in production. Why does it take so long in Hollywood? Maybe they have too many cars and not enough horses!
You can pre-order the disk now through Amazon (you have to click on the blu-ray choice) BUT, if I were you, I’d wait a bit ’cause I’m getting a DISCOUNT code which will save us all a little money. The disks are still in production but they promised to send me the code soon – you won’t get the Blu-ray till March 18 anywhere so get it HERE for less!
Happy Days and I’ll post the code ASAP!
Enjoy the Ride!
your friends in the saddle – Tim & Pam Farley