Rest in Peace, Keep the Faith

Hannah Sue Burnett and Keep the Faith. Photo via Michael Burnett’s Facebook Page.

We’re saddened to learn of the loss of Keep the Faith, Hannah Sue Burnett’s first five-star horse, who passed away on April, 5, 2019 at the age of 28.

“Benny,” a bay Thoroughbred (Big Jim Taylor x Spring Double), was Hannah Sue’s first “big time” horse. They completed their first event in 2000, the Preliminary at River Glen, and continued to climb the ranks together.

Hannah Sue Burnett and Keep the Faith. Photo via Hannah Sue’s Facebook Page.

After a 14th place finish at Young Riders in 2006, they moved up to the four-star level and prepared for the biggest event of their lives: The 2007 Rolex Kentucky Three-Day Event. Hannah Sue was 20-year-old and riding on the wings of her angel, Benny.

Hannah Sue shared a tribute to Benny on her Facebook page today:

“Every year when Kentucky 3-Day Event rolls around I am reminded of my first time competing there…in 2007 when I was 20 years old riding Keep the Faith.

“I will never forget the feelings of that incredible week—mostly of sheer terror but also incredible support from family and friends. The biggest thing that sticks out in my mind is the overwhelming feeling of love and appreciation for my horse.

“This year there is something missing as Kentucky week nears as my family and I lost a member of our family on Friday, April 5, 2019.
Keep the Faith (aka Benny) was not only my first real event horse, he was my best friend. He was always turning heads with his beauty but was humble in how he always forgave my constant mistakes.

“He literally taught me to keep my faith in all parts of my life. I’ll never forget Clark Montgomery leading me around the start box at Rolex that day—Clark as pale with fear as I when we heard Jessica shakily (but seriously) say, ‘Jesus take the wheel.’

“We have made a lot of jokes about that moment since but I know—and as my mom always said, our Benny was an absolute gift from God. I will never forget what a blessing he was and still is in my and my family’s lives.

“Thank you to my parents for loving him as much as I did and for taking wonderful care of him in his retirement. I’ll love you forever Benny. Rest well my friend.”

Our hearts go out to Hannah and her family. Rest in peace, Keep the Faith.