Friday, November 21, 2008

Swearing-in Ceremony for two Mounted Patrol Horses

Los Angeles - On Wednesday, October 15, 2008, Sherman and Wilbur stood before Chief Ranger Albert Torres, raised their right hoofs and took an oath to "preserve and protect our park environments, provide field patrol services for city regional parks and assist with the safeguarding of lives and property." Chief Ranger Torres then officially welcomed Sherman and Wilbur into the Ranger Mounted Patrol Unit.

Originally created in the early 1970's, the Ranger Mounted Unit was established to provide services to the users of Griffith Park's extensive bridle trails. The Unit provided daily patrols and assisted stranded riders and hikers, stopped runaway horses and provided medical aid. Mounted Rangers also helped enforce various state and local municipal laws.

The first four Rangers assigned to the Mounted Unit housed their horses at the Griffith Park's pony rides because the Equestrian Center had not yet been built. Over the years, the Unit evolved into an integral part of the Ranger Division and obtained a horse trailer and expanded to Elysian Park, Sepulveda Basin and Hansen Dam.

Due to declining budgets and competing priorities, the Mounted Unit operations were scaled back. Sherman and Wilbur's new appointments were made possible by a generous grant from the Los Angeles Parks Foundation. The gracious gift allowed the Department of Recreation and Parks to assign two Park Rangers, Ryan Bernaldo and Arcelia Rosas, to the Mounted Unit and purchase their partners Sherman and Wilbur and necessary equipment.
After the ceremony, Rangers Bernaldo and Rosas rode Sherman and Wilbur into Griffith Park to begin their first day as part of the Mounted Unit Patrol.
Jane Kolb: (213) 928-9294
Amy A. Garcia: (213) 928-9289

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