‘He brought joy and laughter’: much-loved Rocky dies at 24

  • The Royal Naval Royal Marines Riding Stables (RNRMRS) has said a final farewell to a special horse who gave “hours of enjoyment and love” to many riders.

    Sergeant Major Rocky died last month (29 November) at his home at the RNRMRS’ Bickleigh Barracks, aged 24.

    RNRMRS is a charity riding club primarily for military personnel and their families.rocky-portrait

    Skewbald gelding Rocky was a retired service horse who arrived at the stables eight years ago.

    Rocky made many public appearances and his last was leading the parade of horses at the stables’ Remembrance Sunday service this year.

    “He has given many people hours and hours of enjoyment and love,” said Cathie Gillespie of the RNRMRS.

    “For those less able he has gave them the utmost confidence in their abilities.

    “Rocky certainly brought an awful lot of joy and laughter to a lot of people. He will be very sadly missed by all but his legacy will live on.”rocky-stable

    Known for his cheeky side, Rocky frequently escaped from his field, usually taking his equine companion Murphy with him.

    RNRMRS staff spent many hours trying to retrieve them.

    “They were two monkeys together,” added Ms Gillespie.

    “Rocky’s ashes will be brought home and placed under a new tree which will be planted in the yard – maybe a Rocky Rose would be a perfect kind?”

    In Rocky’s honour, the stables intends to launch a Rocky memorial award.

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    This will be given annually to the most improved rider.

    “It’s a sad day for the stables,” said Commodore Ian Shipperley, Devonport naval base commander and trustee of the RNRMRS.

    “We are not only losing a great character but we are losing a much-loved figurehead.”

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