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Community mourns horseback rider: ‘We were blessed to have her in our lives’

Published: Jul. 15, 2021 at 11:38 PM EDT
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AIKEN, S.C. (WRDW/WAGT) - The Aiken County community is coping after the loss of a well-known competitive horse rider. Tributes continue to pour in honoring and remembering the life of 32-year-old Annie Goodwin.

Goodwin died after a tragic accident at the Stable View Equestrian Facility. We’re told her horse missed a jump and then threw her from its back. Since then the messages of loss, love, and support are non-stop.

Close friends, work friends, Olympians and people just sharing their sympathy, one thing is clear Annie Goodwin was a remarkable young woman. One of the many posts that stood out was from Olympic equestrian Will Coleman saying he hopes that his daughter grows up to be like Goodwin - tough, brave, persistent, and kind.

“Her smile she just really lit up the room, really had the ability to fit right in, put everybody at ease and *chokes up* it’s a little bit intimidating our business,” said Daniel Geitener, owner and operator of DFG Stables.

A business where not everything goes right all of the time.

Here’s Annie in her own words, “There are instances where bad things -- and it can happen to anyone. Every day, something bad can happen, but that’s not really a way to live your life. You’ve got to kinda push on.”

A career that comes with risk, but always a source of positivity and passion.

“She was just a bright light I mean she really was positive if she was having a bad day no one knew it, the horses for sure didn’t know it,” said Geitener. “I think the people that stay strong and they push that fear aside, it’s a healthy fear that we have and it drives us to be better every single day.”

And at just 32 years old she had a lifetime ahead of her, unbounded potential.

“She was headed for the top she really had a lot of natural talent,” he said.

Annie already won several prestigious awards with her horse Federman B, and had a big season planned. Unfortunately, it was a season cut short.

“My goal is to go to the Rolex get it done,” she said.

But her impact lives on inspiring the horse community for years to come.

“We were blessed to have her in our lives when we did and just really even when she left and started her own business. Really a part of our personal family, barn family and all the extended horse community in Aiken were a real close knit group and this has hit everyone pretty hard,” he said.

“Continue to better yourself and to have people on your side, I think that’s really important to just have people in your corner,” she said.

Stable View will remained closed the next two weeks to give time to mourn. Friends say there will be a hole in the community where she was once but isn’t anymore. She leaves behind her parents, fiancé, and her extended family at her barn.

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