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After 13 Years a Man and His Horse Are Reunited at Harbor Springs Ranch

After almost 14 years, a man and his horse were reunited at a ranch in Harbor Springs.

For two years Jake Slater and his horse, Traveler, were inseparable. Jake worked on a ranch in northern Michigan, and because Traveler had previously come from an abusive handler, Jake had to earn his trust and friendship. After those two years together, Traveler had to be sold and the pair never saw each other again.

Jake went on to become a very successful Elvis tribute artist while Traveler ended up at the Rising Hope Equestrian Center, a non-profit ranch located in Harbor Springs. Jake always had Traveler in his mind and the heart for the last 13 years, and with the help of his best friend, the pair were able to reunite after more than a decade apart.

“He came up to me, and he knew right who I was, and it blew my mind,” Slater said. “I couldn’t believe it, and just to see him, and looking so healthy, and like, like it was just yesterday that I saw him, but it had been almost 14 years, so it was incredibly emotional for me.”

“It was extremely emotional, and it seemed like there was like a big sort of kind of relief lifted off of Jake to see him for the first time and realize how good he still looked at 27-years-old, because he hadn’t seen him for almost 13 years,” Leah Keller, the manager of the Rising Hope Equestrian Center said. “I don’t think he really thought that there was a possibility of him still being alive, let alone him still being ridden and used in a lesson program, and still pretty healthy for an old horse.”

Keller says Jake is always welcome to come and see his friend.

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