Life Leaders Ranch & Farm

Mission: To help people PLAN and LEAD in LIFE to flourish at their callings inspired by animals.

American Patriot, Star of the Bar, and Indian Legend are the horses Life Leaders Founder David is called to care for and share with members and friends of Life Leaders. Patriot is a 2001 Morgan Horse registered as Anakus Flynn. Star is a 2003 American Quarter Horse registered as Star of the Bar. Indy is part registered Paint (stallion) and Quarter Horse (mare) born 2008. All made the journey from Washington to Alabama. Patriot and Indy came in 2009--Star had one more job to do for a family with two cute little girls whose mom had died, then she  joined her herd 2015. Life Leaders Ranch also cares for rescued dogs, cats, and donkeys.

Star took David on a trail ride in Washington in 2007.

In 2009, when American Patriot (2001 Morgan Horse) and Indian Legend (2008 Paint) joined David traveling cross country to return to "Sweet Home Alabama," Star stayed behind at the request of two loving grandparents. They wanted to spend time with their granddaughters and offer them opportunity for added purpose through horsemanship after their mom died.

The family honored their promise to call David first if circumstances changed. The granddad contracted Parkinson's Disease, which led to him deciding he should not ride horses. Star's blessing could become a burden.

In April 2015, David and newly adopted dog, Cowgirl, made a round trip of nearly 5,000 miles to reunite with Star and bring her home. Star had lived in the woods and had not seen traffic or a horse trailer much less been on one for six years. Yet, she showed grace and loyalty to get on a trailer daily for six straight days to travel home to her herd for life. 

Star had been herd mates with Patriot and Indy six years before. At their reunion on April 25, 2015, they recognized each other. Indy, only one year of age when they were last together (even though he has become the biggest horse in the group) began to follow her as he did as a colt. Star had been his adoptive mom, and Indy renewed treating her as such. They remember.

5000 Miles to Bring My Horse to Sweet Home Alabama by Dr. David Dyson

Story published on

Animal Mentors and Friends


Life Leaders Farm


Life Leaders members, partners, and visitors from selected nonprofits experience animals and plants as part of their plans to learn, change, grow, and improve plans for life as well as develop personal leadership, plus interpersonal leadership trust. People can flourish more when they have more purpose and transform themselves through positive experiences. For many, horses help them connect to purpose and people as well as gain courage; others improve "digging in the dirt" growing food.


  1. Supported sponsorship of Riderless horses at the Tribute to the Founder of National Veterans Day, Weeks Monument, Birmingham
  2. Supported Riderless horse for the National Veterans Day Parade
  3. Taught lessons learned with horses related to developing trust and instincts in Life Leaders public seminars
  4. Coached to develop habits, instincts, trust--with and without horses
  5. Helped people develop plans for life
  6. Helped people develop more courage and confidence
  7. Gentled a few never-ridden horses for the safety of human owners and learned more trust lessons
  8. Rescued and adopted donkeys, dogs and cats, added a protected fenced and covered outdoor pet garden free from predators.
  9. Caring for three horses, two donkeys, three dogs, seven cats, and birds with a protected nest (as of May 2016).

Plans to expand/improve

  1. Plan for Life workshops for individuals, couples, and teams
  2. Seminars with horses part of the lessons
  3. Coaching on life leadership lessons learned from horses
  4. Farm grows more food for horses, food banks, charities
  5. Students interact with animals to learn, connect...develop Plans
  6. Veterans Making Comebacks from PTSD and/or injury care for horses to gain sense of connection, improve plans

Dreams with Partners

  1. Land and Facilities for workshops, events, meetings, trails, animals
  2. Children gain core balance and strength as well as courage in equine therapy
  3. Covered lighted arena/pavilion for exercise and events
  4. Nature trails for hiking, private areas to write plans
  5. Improved fencing and facilities to support volunteers and visitors
  6. Cabins for retreats, meetings, workshops to plan, improve, renew
  7. White horse, black horse, riderless tack for patriotic events

Cecil the Lion: Will you Hear My Cry...?

by Dr. David Dyson

in response to the international call for more animal rights after an American caused this protected lion to suffer horribly before killing himto gain a trophy

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