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      Gamecock equestrian battles kids cancer

      BLYTHEWOOD (WACH)- Gamecock equestrian and the Curing Kids Cancer foundation teamed up over the weekend to put smiles on a special group of children's faces.

      Six-year-old Athena Orr was one of those that attended the event. She was diagnosed with Leukemia in June 2011 and has went through chemo treatments at Richland Memorial's Children's Hospital.

      It was Orr's first time riding a horse.

      "What do you want to be when you grow up?" Athena's grandmother asked.

      "I want to be a cowgirl," Athena replied with a smile.

      This was the first official Gamecocks Battle Kids Cancer event and a special one for all.

      "I think that the horses can feel their love and the children get to love on the horses," Grainne Owen, founder of Curing Kids Cancer said.

      The Gamecocks have won two national championships in equestrian (2005, 2007), but this arguably was their biggest victory.

      "We just wanted to help in anyway that we can to make it a happier day for some of these kids and families who are struggling," head coach Boo Major said.

      For one day, Athena had the opportunity to be away from a hospital bed and enjoy horses.

      "I liked when I said neigh and it made him stop," Athena smiled. "It was a lot of fun."

      Athena's family and doctors expect her to be cancer free by July.