Mane Event Horse Honoring Lauren Landavazo and Makayla Smith Unveiled
A Mane Event Horse called "Forever," honoring Lauren Landavazo and Makayla Smith, was unveiled and dedicated in a ceremony today at McNeil Jr. High.
Hundreds of people gathered today at McNeil Jr. High for the dedication of the newest Mane Event horse in Wichita Falls. Makayla Smith spoke to the crowd, announcing her choice of the name "Forever" for the horse, symbolizing how long her friendship with Lauren and how long Lauren's legacy would last.
The project was headed up by Bethany Tolley, who saw the impact Lauren's death and Makayla's wounding last September had on their families and community. Local artist Rhonda Ivy even worked with Makayla to design and paint the horse, using Lauren and Makayla's favorite colors and a dog and cat to symbolize the two friends. Lauren's father Vern told Times Record News,
It was very touching. To follow what Makayla said about the name of it and what went behind all that, we were emotional. We wanted to be surprised and not get our fingerprints on this. We wanted the people who came up with it, Bethany and Makayla's input. We didn't want to get in the way of what they were trying to do.
Landavazo also noted that the family is grateful to have such a positive memorial for their daughter at a school she loved.