Ninety-year old John Shear, a Santa Anita paddock guard was injured yesterday trying to protect a young girl from being potentially trampled.
"As seen live on simulcast television, Shear, instead of dropping the perimeter rope he was holding and protecting himself, ran in front of the loose horse and threw himself in front of and on top of the young girl in the crowd, who appeared to be three or four years of age. "
We got a note this morning from Bill, who is a HANA board member. Bill has had the pleasure to meet both John and his wife. Bill commented:
I know his wife, Diane through the internet, and met John about 6 or 7 years ago on a trip to Hollywood Park. They are most definitely some great people. I bet it would lift his spirits to get a ton of e-mails from horseplayers.
Jeff sent one on behalf of us at HANA below:
The Horseplayers Association of (HANA), a group of 1900 horseplayers throughout the U.S and Canada wish you a speedy and complete recovery from your injuries. Your selfless actions on March 12th were truely heroic and for that we salute you. Our thoughts and prayers are with you.
Jeff Platt, President Horseplayers Association of North America
If you have come across John, or even if you haven't, please consider sending him a note via Huntington Hospital's email feature here. It only takes a minute to brighten someone's day.