Home at last - San Diego, California News Station - KFMB Channel 8 - cbs8.com

Home at last

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - On a sun-splashed East County day, a gentle 18-year-old with eyes that could melt your heart is spending her golden years in peace and contentment at Tir Na Nog, the county's oldest equine rescue facility.

"She came to us in 2008," Pat Rigney said.

Prior to that, Simone's life was a living hell.

When the county rescued her, she was closer to death than any horse they had rescued," Pat said.

Simone was discovered on a property in Campo by the Border Patrol.

"(They) saw this truly emaciated mare in a corral, unfortunately also in the corral was her dead foal," Pat said.

When she was strong enough, Simone was adopted by Tir Na Nog.

"That began a partnership with animal service that brought her, her best buddy behind her, Charger. He was saved from the Tijuana River Valley, when it flooded in December '08. Also in horrible condition," Pat said.

Over the years, Tir Na Nog has adopted 30 previously neglected and abandoned equines from animal services, including some burros and mini-mules. They make up the bulk of their 48 permanent residents.

"We are usually the last resort. It's usually based on medical reasons that they are deemed not adoptable," Pat said.

Actually, Simone does have somewhere to go. On Saturday, she is being vanned down to the San Diego County Department of Animal Services in Bonita from 10 a.m. to noon to meet the public and thank those who saved her life.

"Just show up and meet Simone and we'll take your picture with her," Pat said.

Simone will melt your heart and remind you that the depth of our human soul is determined by the way we care for animals.

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