On Saturday, February 29, 2020, the Eventing community lost one of its most promising teams. Katharine Morel (Kat as she was known to those close to her) was a fierce competitor, full of determination and a drive to succeed that many of us can only dream to possess. But she wasn’t just an eventer. She was my beautiful wife, a daughter, a sister, an aunt, a friend and truly one of the most kind and caring people anyone could ever meet. She loved without bounds, and was a shining light in any room she entered, with an infectious laugh that could brighten anyone’s day. The world is a darker place without her light.
Kat met Kerry in September of 2015 at the racetrack. While she only saw her briefly in stall, she knew she had to take a chance on that beautiful mare. What transpired over the next few years was nothing short of extraordinary. Kat and Kerry became an unstoppable team, rising confidently through the levels of eventing in both Canada and the US, forging an unbreakable bond. They faced many challenges together and grew to become an inspiration for many in Alberta and across the country.
When Kat and Kerry left the start box that fateful day, they never expected that they wouldn’t be coming home. Fence #8 on the Intermediate course claimed both their lives.
This was a very tragic accident. They were strong. They were prepared. They were ready. But one missed step was all it took and now Kat and Kerry will never ride the fields of another course again. Kat lived and loved Eventing and would never want anyone to stop, but if we could do something to prevent a future tragedy, she would be the first one out there leading the way.
There is technology available which can help prevent rotational falls. However, it is not in use at all facilities or all events due to the cost of purchasing, installing and maintaining it. Together, we can change that. With everyone’s help we can make the sport safer for all those who are simply doing what they love. These systems can cost up to $2500 for every jump they are installed on and few event organizers can afford that. All these devices must be installed by trained and certified course builders or designers.
We want to fill in that gap. But we can’t do it alone.
All funds received from this campaign will be held in trust. From there, funds will be distributed directly to event venues throughout Canada to upgrade any jumps at the preliminary level and up to include this MIM technology. Through this fund, event organizers in Canada who host EC sanctioned events can submit a proposal for costs to upgrade their jumps.
Together, we can make a difference. Together, we can save a life. It may be too late for Kat and Kerry but if the tragic loss of their lives can lead to improved safety in their beloved sport, then maybe we can find a little light in this darkness. Please generously help us while we try to #KerryOnForKat on behalf of the future of the sport.
- Christine Baurenschmidt
- Lacey Santala
- Karen Holz
- Lacey Santala
Fundraising team (9)
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