Angel Horse finds new home at Veterans Affairs Clinic - KULR8.com | News, Weather & Sports in Billings, Montana

Angel Horse finds new home at Veterans Affairs Clinic

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Jonnie Jonckowski, Angel Horses President Jonnie Jonckowski, Angel Horses President
Veterans Affairs Health Care Center of Billings Veterans Affairs Health Care Center of Billings

One Angel Horse statue found a new home Thursday at the Veterans Affairs Health Care Center of Billings.  Jonnie Jonckowski, president of the Angel Horses organization, said the donation aims to bring attention to the cause behind the horses, and to the needs of veterans in our community.

"I hope it brings awareness to the community," Jonckowski said, "they need a facility like ours, for the PTSD cases and for our Veterans. It's been proven so much that horses are terrific therapy, terrific healers."

Jonckowski's Angel Horses organization uses rescued animals like horses to provide physical and emotional stimulus to seniors, at-risk youth, special needs children, and individuals affected by cancer in the region.

The statues, that are all painted by local artists and sponsored by local families, are all donated to various locations around Billings. This particular statue is painted by Carol Hagan, and sponsored by Melissa Oakland, The Oakland Company and Dru and Allison Cederberg.

"Hopefully we'll place another couple in here," Jonckowski said, "once we saw the reception and how excited they were, it makes us feel really good. We treat veterans, so it fits right in."

Chuck Hayter with the Veterans Affairs Health Care Center said the clinic is very thankful to Angel Horses for donating the statue, and VA staff look forward to veterans enjoying the new hallway decor.

"I think our veterans will be very impressed, honored," Hayter said, "to me, this is just a part  of the community accepting and acknowledging in a positive way that we are here and serving a population here that needs and deserves our care."

The statue now on display in the VA clinic off of Spring Creek Lane raised $13,000 during the Angel Horses' Boot Scootin' Barn Dance fundraiser, but Jonckowski said the organization did not meet their goal at this year's auction. 

"We're still about $100,000 short of what we need to purchase an indoor facility," Jonckowski said.

The Angel Horses president said the deadline for the building they hope to purchase is October 15th. 

Anyone interested in giving to Angel Horses or learning more about the organization's work can visit www.angelhorsesmt.org

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