The Long Riders' Guild

Tex Cashner

The Heartbreak Trail to Texas by Tex Cashner

Every generation sees an army of young boys who dream about saddling up a horse and riding off in search of the legendary “Old West.” Many dream. Few have the courage to mount up and ride off on a quest for that elusive mirage. Marshal Ralph Hooker, one of the Founding Members of The Long Riders’ Guild, made such a journey in the early 1920s. Thirty years later another brave lad stepped up to the saddle and then cantered off in search of adventure. And like Marshal Hooker, young Tom Cashner found it too.

It was 1951 and Cashner was barely eighteen when he set off on an equestrian Odyssey across a still largely rural America. But while Paladin, Yancy Derringer and a host of other television westerns were peddling the cowboy fantasy, Cashner was out living the equestrian reality. And what he found was nearly two thousand miles worth of adventures and hardships.

It was a journey both remarkable, and in many ways ordinary, one day full of tragedy, a few miles later full of unexpected romance.

By the time Cashner stepped down from the saddle, he was on the other side of an invisible barrier that would forever set him slightly apart from those he left behind. Because the boy who left was not the man who arrived. Along the way “Tom” had lost his heart and his horse. But “Tex” had discovered a new name and an appreciation for life that comes to those who are brave enough to seek out the extraordinary. This is his never before published story.

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