By Bob Hallmark
LONGVIEW, TX (KLTV) - 23 year old Michael Attaway grew up with a boyhood dream.
"I had asked for a horse ever since I could speak really," says Attaway.
While he was serving in the Marines in Iraq, he got a letter from his father explaining a new girl named Lucy, was waiting for him.
"I was over there in Iraq, and opened up my letter, and he had all these pictures in there of Lucy and another horse and he said 'well I finally got you your horse son,'" he says.
After he got out, Attaway came home and started a family, including Lucy, but struggled financially. When Lucy had a severe leg injury, he had to face facts.
"And I was really short on money and didn't know what to do I wanted her to go to a good home. I was caught between and family and a horse I loved and really wanted to hang on to her," Attaway says.
But that's when Safe Haven Equine Rescue stepped in.
"We said 'No, Safe Haven's going to step up and rehab this horse for you,'" says Safe Haven director Richard Fincher.
"He said he could see I had really strong ties to this horse and really cared about her he really wanted to help me out," Michael says.
Fincher will rehab Lucy at no cost, for a simple reason.
"He's a serviceman, and I believe any military should be honored some way or another or helped some way by the American people," Fincher says.
For Attaway, it was the best Fourth of July he could imagine.
"Overwhelmed , this is probably by far the best Independence Day I've ever had," Attaway says.
Lucy will be cared for at Safe Haven for three weeks and then returned to Attaway.