EAST ALTON - Reaching out and lending a helping hand to those in need isn't exclusive only to humans.

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At their annual Mustangs for Mustangs event, Ford Mustang car enthusiasts, wild mustang horse rescuers, and flea market enthusiasts joined together to raise awareness and funds for the Legendary Mustang Sanctuary.

The event combined a meet and greet with mustang horses, a Mustang car show, and flea market.

Shawn and Kathy Lewis adopted their first two wild mustangs to tame and ride. Within 30 days, they were riding them through their pastures.

The new enthusiasts found others in the area who were excited about adopting and protecting mustangs, and the couple had goals of creating a sanctuary.

"They live as families in the wild, when the government steps in and rounds them up in helicopters, they separate them. The families never get to see each other, and they are so family-oriented that it really affects them."

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With a mission to protect and rescue these majestic creatures, the Legendary Mustang Sanctuary was born.

"These mustangs have been apart of American history since the 1400s, and they are getting fewer and fewer out in the wild. From what I understand, there are less than 2,000 out in the wild now."

Since they began operations, they have rescued nearly 100 wild mustang horses and burros.

"Wild mustangs that have been captured are not violent nor crazy, they have just been ripped from their families and have had very stressful lives," she said. "You have to be patient and learn to understand them and work with them."

The sanctuary, located in Alhambra, houses five permanent resident mustangs, and tames wild mustangs and burros for adoption. They restore the spirits of these creatures, gaining their trust, and begin training them for riding.

The 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization relies on the help of volunteers and donations to maintain its operations, and continue rescuing mustangs and burros. Donations to the group are tax deductible. To volunteer and contribute, please visit www.legendarymustangsanctuary.org.

Read More:

May 17, 2019 | Saving One Life at a Time: Legendary Mustang Sanctuary Seeks Vendors for Huge Flea Market and Craft Fair

Jun 1, 2015 | Legendary Mustangs get a little help from their friends

Jun 2, 2018 | Mustangs for Mustangs Car Cruise benefits local organization's mission to rescue wild mustangs

May 28, 2016 | Horse power: Mustangs for Mustangs

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