John Tidwell served four years in the United States Marine Corps and was honorably discharged in 2012. He received a Purple Heart from injuries he sustained from three IED attacks in Afghanistan in 2010 while conducting a mission to assist fellow Marines who had been disabled by Taliban attacks. His injuries include shrapnel and a TBI.
“Since getting out of the military I have always felt like I have to be on the defense. I have a hard time trusting people and have a hard time connecting…Being on the back of a horse is one of the most peaceful and freeing feelings that relax my body and mind. I truly believe that horses heal. Ever since I was young I could get on a horse and all my problems, stress, and fears were gone as soon as I swung my leg over"
John tells us that his goals with a horse are to “bond and grow, work together on our issues and help focus on something other than my past and to be a part of something that I can keep setting goals and challenging myself on a daily basis.”
John lives in South Georgia and has two sons Levi and Colton who both also love horses and the outdoors. He is engaged to be married to his fiancée, Leah. He enjoys hunting and has been taking roping lessons. John is eager to have his own horse and get to work with it to help him bond more with his family and to get back to the man they need and deserve.
Special thanks to Brittney Willis, Willis Ranch Photography for capturing the day and Kelsey Willis of Willis Performance Horses for the use of the arena and steers.
Warrior is a 14 year old, Quarter Horse gelding. His previous owner, Steven Pabst, had him up for sale when he heard about John. After meeting John, hearing his story, and wanting to help, Mr. Pabst agreed to accommodate Charlie Five's budget.
Warrior is a very well trained head horse that has the potential facilitate John's growth for a long time.
John's goal is to learn from Warrior and apply what he learns to other horses in the future.