Day At The Track

The best Christmas gift

10:59 AM 30 Dec 2020 NZDT
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Taralee Waite met Foamy on Christmas Eve
Taralee Waite met Foamy on Christmas Eve
Jackie Wimbush Photo

Moffat, ON — This holiday season was made extra special for an Eastern Ontario family thanks to the harness racing mare Foamy who was delivered as a present to a very surprised and deserving Taralee Waite on Christmas Eve.

While 2020 has been challenging for everyone, it has been especially tough for Tara who was diagnosed with breast cancer in February. She was booked for surgery in March but when the pandemic hit that was pushed back until late May. She was then given the devastating news she also had ovarian cancer. Since then she’s gone through seven rounds of chemo as well as radiation treatment.

“Throughout it all Tara has remained hugely positive and optimistic with a touch of realism,” said Tara’s friend and neighbor, Julie Morrison Kangas, who is best known in the Standardbred world as the caretaker of the great trotter Goodtimes, a member of Canada’s Horse Racing Hall of Fame.

Tara’s husband, Glenn Cameron, wanted to surprise his wife with a horse for Christmas and reached out to Julie asking for assistance.

“Tara was an avid rider until her twenties and her husband approached me to help find her a horse,” explained Julie. “The horse would be for trail riding, playing around, emotional support and overall therapist and what better breed for all of that than a Standardbred?”

Julie turned to Joanne Colville and asked if the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society had any horses that would be suitable. Her timing couldn’t have been better as the Striking Sahbra daughter Foamy had just become available.

“Foamy had just been returned to OSAS through unfortunate circumstances. She’s a lovely mare with the sweetest personality and really cute,” described Joanne.

The plan was hatched and local horseman Jason Woodward drove Foamy to her new home and Glenn managed to pull off his equine Christmas gift for his wife.

The following is part of what Julie wrote regarding the surprise on her Facebook page:

“Well, we pulled it off. Weeks of secrecy and behind the scenes texting. It has taken a village to pull this off.

“Welcome to the Cameron family, Foamy. Tara was speechless and had absolutely no idea. This horse will be exactly what Tara needs, she deserves this perfect Christmas present.

Welcome to the Cameron family, Foamy. Jackie Wimbush photo.

“Knowing the perfect breed, I turned to Joanne and the Ontario Standardbred Adoption Society for help. She knew exactly the right horse for this very special situation. Within a week we had everything ironed out. Enter Jason (Woodward) who, even though had been racing for two days down Mohawk way, he made yet another trip to pick Foamy up. Thank you, thank you, thank you, to you both. It means so much.

“Foamy must know the role she is to play since she has settled in like a dream. This is the boost my good friend Tara needs and deserves. Special thank you to Jackie Wimbush for documenting Foamy’s journey so far. It is so very much appreciated. It is the start of a great friendship for these two. Tara, you deserve this very special gift.”

Tara, who has two children, daughter Kennedy, 11, and son Harley, 7, received another special gift just after Foamy’s arrival in the form of a dream featuring her father who died close to five years ago.

“I have Irish roots, deep, green roots. In the dream we were sitting in a pub talking. The bartender handed him a beer and my Dad said ‘Ahh, would ya look at the cúr (pronounced cure) on that pint!’ I said ‘Dad, cúr means foam/foamy in Irish doesn’t it?’ He smiled at me and I woke up,” recalled Tara.

Understandably Foamy’s new nickname is Cure which is very fitting on so many levels.

Click here for a video of Tara’s introduction to Foamy.

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