DEL MAR, Calif. -- A former horse jockey is doing what she can to work her way back to walking three years after a riding incident seriously injured her.
Like most jockeys, Anne Von Rosen got into racing due to her love of horses and her passion for the sport. But on March 11, 2014, after finishing second at the Turf Paradise in Phoenix, her horse collapsed and fell on top of her breaking her back and severing her spinal cord.
"It's weird because I knew I was on the ground," said Von Rosen. "I knew what would happen. I couldn't feel my legs. For whatever reason I stayed really calm. I was determined to make it out and I will walk again."
Von Rosen currently lives in Phoenix, where she rehabs daily hoping one day she can walk again.
With her passion and career taken away, she started to accept the benefits from the Permanently Disabled Jockeys Fund, a public charity that provides financial assistance to nearly 60 former jockeys who have suffered catastrophic on track injuries.
Riders receive $1000 a month. With a minimum of 60 permanently disabled riders in need, that cost comes out to $60,000 a month for the PDJF.
"They help pay the mortgage, my utility bills," said Von Rosen. "Without PDJF it's hard to make ends meet."
The PDJF relies heavily on donations. This year, The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe will host the official Opening Day after party called "Hats, Heels and Hooves." Some of their proceeds from the event will benefit the fund.
The Inn's pool terrace and Azalea lawn will transform into a Kentucky Thoroughbred Farm, a fitting backdrop for Del Mar’s highly anticipated day.
General Admission tickets are available for purchase for all interested.