Frank Keat had dedicated 65 years of his life to horses. He started working in stables as a teenager, and he later bred the animals and served as a judge at equestrian competitions across England.
On his death bed, the 80-year-old, who had cancer, would regale nurses at Bodmin Hospital in Cornwall with stories about his equine career.
"Dad had been involved with horses since he was 15, and there's nothing he didn't know about them," Keat’s son, Tim, told SWNS.
As his last days approached, Keat told hospital staff that he had just one final wish: He wanted to see his favorite horse, a handsome 5-year-old named Early Morn, one more time.
"Early Morn is a horse that Frank broke himself, and he so wanted to see him again,” staff nurse Samantha Russell told wire service SWNS. "Sadly he was not well enough to visit the stable."
But staff at Bodmin Hospital had a plan up their sleeves. Since Keat couldn’t visit his horse himself, they would bring the animal to him.
On Oct. 23, Keat was wheeled out to the patio of the hospital, where a surprise was waiting.
"He was greeted by his beautiful horse," Russell told SWNS. "Frank was just overwhelmed and speechless."
"I can honestly say that this is the most memorable day of my career," the nurse added. “The emotion was overwhelming and there wasn't a dry eye in the ward.”
Keat’s son said he was extremely grateful to hospital staff for organizing such a "wonderful" surprise.
The octogenarian died peacefully three days later.
According to The Telegraph, Early Morn will be attending Keat’s funeral.
Keat was well-known in the equine community in the U.K. Just last year, he served as president of the Lanivet Horse and Dog Show in Cornwall.
In 2010, Keat won the overall hunter championship at the annual show with his horse Brandy Snap the Third, according to local newspaper West Briton.
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