15 years after horse helps soldier overcome loneliness he ‘pays him back’

When a former member of the Queen’s Guard heard that his service horse is set to retire, he thought it was the perfect time to show gratitude to his old friend by formally adopting him.

Ezphia Rennock and a horse named Agricola met nearly two decades ago in an army barracks in London. From 2000 until 2007, Ezphia served in the British Army as part of the queen’s personal guard. The service horse assigned to him was Agricola, who he said helped him get through the loneliness he experienced being away from home as a teenager.

service horse

“Coming away from home as a 17-year-old it was difficult, and Agricola was where I found companionship,” he told Daily Mail. “I loved all of the horses, but Agricola was special.”

As a new member, he was paired up with Agricola, who was known as a “proper troublemaker.”

“He was only young so he used to throw people off him all the time, we gradually bonded so he accepted me and our friendship just grew stronger from there,” Ezphia said.

Ezphia was the only one who was able to successfully handle Agricola. He and the horse served together in the British Army for seven years until 2007, when Ezphia had to retire to start a family. The former military man thought that it would be the last time he and Agricola would be together.

The service horse.

Recently, however, Ezphia got an unexpected call from one of his friends in the Knightsbridge Barracks who was still serving – Agricola was about to be retired! A short time later, he went to visit and asked about adopting him, but he learned that he had to enter a bid to get the horse.

“I used to sit there with him every day and tell him that one day after retiring I would come back and adopt him so we could be together once we had completed our service,” he said.

Ezphia knew that he wouldn’t be the highest bidder, so he included a heartfelt letter in his bid detailing the time he spent together with his former service horse. He did his best to prove that he would be the perfect owner for Agricola.

Service horse reunites with soldier.

Luckily, it worked!

“Although I was not the highest bidder, they called me instantly and told me to come and pick him up,” he said. He made a £1,000 bid, and although the highest bid was £5,000, the handlers said “there was no question about the matter” and that Agricola would go to him.

When the pair were reunited, Ezphia said that his old friend recognized him instantly. “It was as if I hadn’t ever left,” he said.


Ezphia took to Facebook to share the good news. “This horse helped me through tough, lonely times away from home as a young man,” he wrote. “Today I pay him back.”

Now, Agricola is staying at a Dutchy yard, one of the queen’s yards that Ezphia rents. He visits every day and sometimes, he brings along his daughter with him.

As it turns out, it wasn’t goodbye after all for Ezphia and Agricola, who now have all the time in the world to bond and enjoy each other’s company!

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