February 16, 2012

Joshua turns ho-hums to ho-ho-ho!

Joshua turns ho-hums to ho-ho-ho!
By ALLAN TINKER
Joshua not only “fit the battle of Jericho” but this Joshua turned quiet hospital surroundings into a fun place to be! This Joshua also happens to be a seven-year-old Shetland pony.
It took a little clearance from the “powers,” but with Pastor Betty Stedman lending her special powers from a higher source to the project, approval for the visit was quickly granted. McLean County Extension Agent Irene Graves would bring her “Personal Ponies” companion and non-profit organization member to Community Memorial Hospital, to visit Swing Bed residents and other residents alike. The magic day was Thursday, February 9 at 4 p.m.
Approval had been received from CMH Hospital spokesperson Karen Aafedt, who officially approves of such things for the care center. She found that hospital policy was “animals may come as visitors to the hospital.”
At the prescribed hour, up came Joshua, nonchalantly riding the hospital elevator, accompanied by Graves, Jerry Stavig and her son Aaron, and Pastor Stedman. A trial run on Feb. 4 had gone as well, testament to the absolute good nature of this black, shaggy pony.
Stedman, armed with a bag of cut-up apples; bandana-adorned Stavig with a quick hand, a pail, and an eye for tail twitches that might indicate malfunctions, or functions; and Stavig’s son Aaron, dressed in cowpoke style, accompanied the Personal Ponies duo.
 


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