The husband of Philippa Humphreys, the event rider who died in a fall at Jersey Fresh last Saturday (14 May), has said she knew the risks of eventing and “accepted them unconditionally”.
Peter Humpheys issued a statement yesterday (19 May), which concluded: “Philly lived and breathed the sport. For her, the cross-country was it. All the work, expense and endless hours of dedication, it all came down to the few minutes on the cross-country course. She knew the risks. We talked about them often. She accepted them unconditionally. She went out the way she would have wanted, doing what she loved more than anything else in the world, on her most treasured partner, Rockstar [stable name of Rich N Famous, the horse Philippa was riding when she had her fatal accident].”
British rider Philippa (née Richards), 33, was born in Chester. She moved to the United States in her early 20s and established a successful business in Rockford, Michigan, with Peter.
Since Philippa’s death, people have been contributing to a college fund for the couple’s six-month-old daughter, Millie, set up by the US Equestrian Federation’s Joanie Morris. So far, $58,457 has been raised.
Peter said: “Our darling little Millie keeps me strong. The overwhelming response to her college fund is unprecedented and I am in a state of shock to the amazing generosity. I wish I could thank each one of you in person. Please know that I am reading all the names and wonderful comments of love and support, and this helps me cope tremendously. She will have the pick of the best schools in the country thanks to your kindness and caring.”
Peter also paid tribute to everyone who has helped and supported him since Philippa’s death, with the start of the statement reading:
“From the bottom of my heart, I cannot thank everyone enough for the shower of sympathy and well wishes during these extremely difficult times — our families are incredibly grateful. Words cannot describe how I feel about the amazing outpouring of love and support. The tributes online and the endless stream of visitors, emails, flowers, text messages, have lifted me and given me a strength that I thought was not possible.
“I came home to the farm yesterday to find 40 friends on the premises. Some were bush hogging pastures while others were mowing grass and weed whacking. Flowers were being planted, delicious meals cooking and a heavy duty cleaning of our home was in full force by a gang of lovely ladies in rubber gloves.
“These were the ‘PHE Peeps’ in action, not to mention the horses being pulled in, fed and evening chores being finalised at the barn. What an amazing group of friends we have. Philly loved you all dearly, as do I. Every one of you has touched me deeply and I will never be able to thank you all enough.”