Jump to content


“That’s something that her and I never do is wear a helmet,”

This topic has been archived. This means that you cannot reply to this topic.
23 replies to this topic

#1 greygelding


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,610 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:12 AM

Just a reminder to ride safe.
Sad and preventable. Just wear a helmet. " A low key ride, quiet horses, etc."

Horse rider dies at Hidden Falls Park
Cheryl Camilleri remembered as ‘one of a kind’
By Krissi Khokhobashvili, Journal Features Editor

Posted Image


Cheryl L. Camilleri

A woman from Cool died Saturday in Hidden Falls Regional Park, according to the Placer County Sheriff’s Office.
Cheryl L. Camilleri, 48, was found by passersby on a trail at the park on Mears Road, north of Mt. Vernon Road between Auburn and Lincoln, according to Dena Erwin, public information officer for the sheriff’s office. Camilleri was transported to Sutter Auburn Faith Hospital, where she was pronounced dead at 8 p.m.
An autopsy was performed Tuesday and the cause of death was determined to be closed-head trauma.
“Her fall wasn’t witnessed,” Erwin said, “so they’re just assuming she fell or was thrown off of her horse. No one will ever know.”
Camilleri’s daughter, Brooke Smith, of Loomis, said her mother had been out for a trail ride with two friends and they were on their way back to the trailer. Her mother was riding behind her friends, Smith said, and when they looked back they saw her horse running up a different part of the trail.
“When they finally had caught up to her, there were some hikers there, and she was off her horse, and she was unconscious,” Smith said.
Smith said her family has not had the chance to speak with the hikers who found Camilleri yet, but from what she understands they saw her horse running up a hill as Camilleri tried to stop him, and then saw her either bail off or fall from the horse. As the hikers tried to help Camilleri, one of her friends rode back to the trailer to try to get cell reception to call 911, Smith said, and by the time she got back Camilleri was no longer breathing.
Medics arrived and performed CPR, she said, but Camilleri's breathing was off and on at that point. Once she was taken to the hospital, Smith said, it was clear that she would not survive.
“Her brain was just so damaged, there was no room for air,” she said. “There was nothing they could do. They had to take her off the support.”
Smith, who has ridden horses with her mother for 12 years, said her mother was not wearing a helmet at the time of her fall.
“That’s something that her and I never do is wear a helmet,” she said. “Something as simple as that could have possibly saved her life.”
Camilleri was married to Dante Camilleri and had five children – Smith, Zane Lovelace, Britni Lovelace, Monica Camilleri and John Camilleri, ranging in age from 22 to 30. She worked in marketing and was an avid horseback rider.
“She was the kind of person who when she stepped into the room, everyone kind of stopped what they were doing to focus on her,” Smith said. “She had just a warm kind of personality, just very caring – cared about others’ needs more than her own. Her biggest loves in life were God and her family and friends and her horse."
Camilleri had owned Sam. E., a 14-year-old quarterhorse, for about a year and a half, Smith said. His behavior on Saturday was very out of character for him, she added.
“Up until the point that he took off, her friends who were with her said that all of the horses were very quiet,” said Smith, who has ridden that same trail with her mother several times before. “It was a very low-key ride, nothing happened, and then all of a sudden they looked behind them and her horse had taken off, which was very, very out of character for him.”
The family will hold a celebration of Camilleri’s life at 11 a.m. Saturday, Aug. 11, at Adventure Christian Church in Rocklin.
“She was a one-of-a-kind person,” Smith said. “All of her kids and family are going to strive to be the kind of person that she was, and just try to live our lives to make her proud.”



He knows when you're happy, He knows when you're comfortable,
He knows when you're confident, And he always knows when you have carrots.
~Author Unknown

#2 Pheobe


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 884 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:30 AM

I can't agree more! I've always worn my helmet...i'd rather have helmet hair. My girls wear a helmet, although they hate it as no one wears a helmet around here. At least their heads are protected.

My thoughts and prayers go out to this family though...losing anyone is hard.

#3 ridetowin


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 4,246 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 09:45 AM

So sad, my heart goes out to the family, I NEVER ride without a helmet, I don't care how quiet and broke a horse may be, accidents happen....

"If slaughterhouses had glass walls, there would be more vegetarians"

#4 elitearab


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,525 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 10:13 AM

I feel nekked without one.

#5 kcofholt


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 694 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 11:30 AM

If you have a working brain....you wear a helmet.
If you don't wear a helmet....part of the brain isn't working or ego is larger than brain).

Personally witness a "dear broke, learner horse" have a grasshopper fly up it's nostril....rider was thrown...would have had severe head trauma (head first on to gravel road at a trot)..BUT HAD A HELMET....only because the ride required one. Liner of helmet was actually in 2 pieces after the fall.
Rider was black & blue all over..but ok. (Horse stopped & came back to check on rider...what a horse!)

Also have taken care of patients in ICU....watched them die from head injurys....no helmets.
Wear not for yourself, but for your family.....
or for your horse, who will feed him? (ok, that's a bit low!!!)

Was upset the other day, AQHA was promoting an obstale (sp?) ride ...rider with no helmet......get with it AQHA

Yes I do practice what I say.... I got many a strange look several years ago warming my reining horse up at the Nationals
with my helmet on......It was KY...warm up on a dirt pad in the parking lot at night..think about the dangers here!!
"Champion Equine Athletes"
since 1967

#6 KMCnYellow


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 198 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 11:57 AM

I can't even get on a horse any more without wearing one.

I also noticed that Ms. Charlotte Dujardin was wearing a helmet instead of a top hat in her gold medal winning ride at the Olympics the other day. I sure liked seeing that from someone at the top of their sport.

#7 ladycascabel


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 7,367 posts

Posted 11 August 2012 - 01:13 PM

My heart goes out to the family and friends of the lady who inspired this thread.

One of my pet peeves about the Parelli "program" is that they have said if you follow their steps you won't NEED a helmet. :dry:

Even middle-aged cowboys are capable of learning helmet safety, provided they survive the concussion that finally persuades them that helmets are more protective than a felt hat:

Shot of Goldd 4 072912.jpg

And this is a GENTLE horse, but it is his first ride after a very long lay-off. A truly green horse rates a protective vest as well as a helmet. Broken collarbones and ribs are no fun, either!

Mary Logan


Proud of our family of working western athletes: Arabians, Half-arabs, National Foundation Quarter Horses.
Producers of all-natural grass-fed beef.

The Arabian and Half-arab Fam:

WCF Rampage+/ bay purebred gelding

TS Paarden Mia chestnut purebred mare
HAA Marco Rojo chestnut Classical Spanish gelding
SA Firefoxx chestnut purebred gelding
OFW Carnation bay purebred mare
Skyy RPA amber champagne HA mare
Goldenseal MSL palomino HA gelding


#8 skymare


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 194 posts

Posted 12 August 2012 - 01:16 AM

after a accident that would have emptied my brain on to he ground had i not been wearing a helmet i have not even sat on a horse without one. and i almost didn't wear it that day. considering i flew off the horse, did a somersault and landed on the back of my head on the corner of a brick jutting out of the ground and my rated safety helmet had split from ear to ear i am still damned lucky to be alive. YOU ARE AN IDIOT and you ARE ARROGANT if you don't wear one. not everyone is as lucky as i was and has a chance to learn from bad habits. it's like getting into a car without your seatbelt on. i give no sympathy to ppl who don't use their brains to think!
Breeder of Pure Crabbet Arabians.
Mill Park Anabella (Mill Park Amastar x Millbanda Bellalina)

Farnaway Golightly(pend) Colt by Senussi.

#9 MyssMyst


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 632 posts

Posted 12 August 2012 - 05:55 AM

Is there a way we can encourage helmet usage at shows (even just in general would be great)? Just because anything can happen. I keep thinking back to this video:


Nothing the horse did wrong except being a tad clumsy. I'd love to see helmets used more by minors, especially. Lots of great safety info at http://www.riders4helmets.com for trainers/parents who might be interested.

#10 mhtokay


    Advanced Member

  • Members
  • PipPipPip
  • 2,408 posts

Posted 12 August 2012 - 06:36 AM

I think the more it's talked about, the more people will feel comfortable going against the grain and just do it. I didn't always. Then I only did on young horses. Now I do all the time. I' haven't shown A shows for a couple years. The last reining I did a couple years ago, I did wear my western hat for class, but helmet other places. There are a few in that group that wear helmets. My helmet is actually way more comfortable than my fancy expensive custom hat :dry: and I'm at an age that I care less about what people think... . and I feel braver with it on, which makes me a more confident and effective rider.