'I'm Living My Dream'

North Carolina shoer living the life he's wanted since the fourth grade

SHOEING MENTOR. Bill Reed, right, talks over shoeing concepts with farriers Jeremy Condrey, left, and Travis Lefler. Reed is well known for his willingness to share his knowledge and skills with other shoers.

How many of us are lucky enough to be doing exactly what we’ve wanted to do since we were kids? Chances are we’ve had some distractions along the way, such as dreams of being astronauts, firemen, doctors or jockeys — or maybe the realities of having to do one job to pay bills while dreaming of another.

Not Bill Reed, a 21-year-veteran, show-horse shoer who lives in Columbus, N.C. This man has known what he wanted to do with his life ever since he was a fourth-grader watching a farrier shoe a horse for the first time. And he’s known he wanted to live in the North Carolina mountains ever since vacationing there as a kid from Largo, Fla.

Now he’s got a flourishing business doing exactly what he always dreamed of doing —shoeing top-end sport horses including show jumpers, hunter-jumpers, dressage and event horses in the Carolina foothills.

“People ask what I do for fun and I answer that I shoe horses,” he says with a grin. “I’m living my dream.”

Not only is he living his dream, he’s helping share it with other farriers. One of the biggest reasons fellow shoers recommended Reed for this article was because this natural teacher helped a lot of young shoers get started and also helped a lot of…

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Christy West

Christy West is a freelance writer and the Web site editor for The Horse. She is also a former editor of American Farriers Journal.

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