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Cooper Laid to Rest
Unionville, PA
by Amber Heintzberger
Jennie Brannigan's Cooper dominated intermediate-level eventing in the United States last year and made his international debut in 2009. The young, talented 8-year-old Dutch Warmblood gelding had only begun to make his mark on the world when a freak accident in the show jumping phase of the Fair Hill International CCI*** sidelined him with a tendon injury.

Following tendon surgery at New Bolton Center, Cooper colicked and underwent another surgery. He subsequently developed laminitis, a common problem in his circumstances, and his future quality of life looked grim. He finally succumbed to his long battle on December 14th when the decision was made to humanely euthanize him.

During the past few years Jennie, 22, and Cooper maintained a nearly flawless competition record in which they won an impressive nineteen events. With Cooper Jennie made the move from California to work for Phillip Dutton at True Prospect Farm in Pennsylvania. In 2008 they earned team and individual gold medals at the North American Junior/Young Rider Championships CCI** and were the Adequan USEA Intermediate Gold Cup Champions. In 2009 the indomitable duo were Reserve Adequan/USEA Gold Cup Champions at the advanced level and were named to the USEF High Performance B List. Earlier this year they received the prestigious Jacqueline Mars Training Grant, allowing them the opportunity to travel to England to compete in the Bramham CCI***.

Cooper's many fans followed his meteoric rise to success in the extensive news coverage that he earned through all his wins. His final journey has been documented in Jennie's blog and on her Facebook page.

Prior to Cooper, Jennie struggled to make it to the upper levels with Kozmo, a difficult horse with ongoing health problems. She knew how lucky she was to have Cooper in her life and appreciated every moment with him. Cooper was an amazing athlete and made a big impression in the eventing world. He will be missed.

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