Chris Spurgeon and Duke became best friends the first day they met, in 2014.
Chris, 53, is a professional cowboy who has spent his entire life from rodeo to rodeo,
travelling all over the country. He first rode a horse when he was 3-years-old and he
usually writes cowboy poetry.
Duke was a three-year-old Quarter Horse stallion. “It’s the best horse I’ve ever rode,”
Chris said. Beyond the regular animal-person relationship, there iwas a unique bound
between Chris and Duke.
On an Autumn Friday, night an unidentified person broke into Chris’ farm in the middle of the night
and attacked Duke, causing him serious injuries. The horse fought against
pain and suffering for several days, and so did Chris. “If it comes to that, I’ll put him
down with a bullet myself,” the old cowboy said.
After much praying, Chris found out that Duke might not be permanently injured. However, a few months the cowboy had to put down his best friend.
This story was shot during the 68th Missouri Photo Workshop.