By Erin Cripps-Woods
Fulfilling their life-long ambitions has proven to be a worthwhile journey for Jay and Rebekah Rasmussen.
However, they did not always have the professions they now pursue. Jay knew he wanted to be a Mountie but he was a farrier for eight years; their barn is standing testament to his knack for carpentry. Rebekah specialized in human body therapy and chiropractic adjustments before moving into a career that also involves equine therapy. Their horses are lucky to have a farrier and therapist as owners. They show a deep passion for what they do and their occupations arenʼt just a job to them.
With Jayʼs involvement in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police, there has been growth in his roles and responsibilities. Training for five years with the Killam detachment in Alberta, then moving to Iqaluit, Nunavut for two years, back to Alberta for six months in Edmonton, he has now settled in the Winfield/Breton area. He has moved up in the ranks and learned a lot from moving around.
“People should move and not stay in one place their entire life. It opens your eyes when you move and you realize what you do and donʼt like.”
Jay is the corporal unit commander in Breton, where he has worked for two years. His duties include supervising the constables, acting as a mentor and helping out wherever needed. There are five RCMP members and two clerks in the Breton detachment. It is interesting and definitely not a boring job since there is such a daily variety of policing. Within the RCMP there are also a multitude of opportunities such as being a part of the musical ride or a livestock investigator and other positions in between that provide “safe homes and safe communities.”
Rebekah is also passionate about her work as both a human and equine therapist and enjoys seeing a horse recover after being under her care. Growing up on a farm, Rebekah has cared for animals her entire life. To turn her love of animals into a profession, Rebekah took an equine massage therapy course in British Columbia for two months, and with her education as a human massage therapist, her clientele has grown. She has now been caring for equines for a year and a half and has many referrals when it comes to helping horses heal and returning them to their owners in good health and spirits.
Rebekah doesnʼt try to find the problem just by looking at the horse. “You have to watch how they move in the ring before you can see how to help them.”
Gait analysis, acupressure testing and skeletal balance all contribute to determining how best care for each horse. With a positive outlook, the only part Rebekah doesnʼt always enjoy is when the weather makes caring for a horse difficult.
Overall, Rebekah has a love of caring for horses and humans that many would envy. She has found a way to turn her love into a job that she finds great fulfillment in, and a happy life Jay on their farm.
While their jobs are demanding and they keep relatively busy all the time, Jay and Rebekah find time to be with their four-legged children. They enjoy the laid-back lifestyle and say the neighbours of Winfield are welcoming.
They are definitely suited to living far enough away from their neighbours that they arenʼt in yelling distance but close enough to drop by for a cup of coffee.
Erin Cripps-Woods is a Winfield student interested in pursing a career in journalism.