Arena collapse kills horses during winter storm

Horses killed in roof collapse

GASTON COUNTY, NC (WBTV) - Three horses were killed instantly when an arena collapsed at a farm in Bessemer City Sunday.

The incident happened at Sunnyside Farms Arena on Tryon Courthouse Road as a winter storm blew through.

A loud boom was the sign that something terrible had happened.

“They’re still shocked and can’t believe this happened last nigh,” said David Cole.

David Cole who is related to the people who own Sunnyside Farms, heard the thunderous noise too, but like many others he didn’t think much of it.

“They thought there was other buildings that were going to come down before this came down in the snow,” said Cole.

The family found the horses, Honey, Peyton and Babydoll, late Sunday night.

The sound many had heard, was the collapsing of the horses’ arena. The beams on the structure had fallen in after inches of snow piled on top of the roof. One horse named Shotgun was able to escape harm’s way.

The family is in the middle of burying the horeses who didn’t make it. WBTV’s Bria Bell was told those three ponies were full of fun, loving personalities.

“Honey was the one in charge of everything. She tried to run everything in the pasture. Peyton could see me coming and knew what I was trying to do with her and she would have nothing to do with me,” Cole continued.

Babydoll, the baby of the bunch, would find a friend in almost anyone.

“If you’d come out here, she’d probably be in your back pocket and following you around,” Cole said.

The farm has been established for about 30 years. The family doesn’t know if they will rebuild the area, as they’re still mourning.

“During the storm our arena collapsed and 3 of our dear horses passed away,” the farm posted on Facebook Monday. “Please say a prayer for us all. Also, please be respectful and realize it was not just 3 horses that passed away to us....these were pets that we loved and will miss daily!!”

The horses are being buried.

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