The McCrary family,
I recently had the opportunity to ride the new trail named after Emma and because it was one of the funnest trails I've ever ridden anywhere and I was so impressed with the effort behind bringing it to a reality, I wanted to learn more about it's namesake. What an amazing woman Emma was and an amazing life she must have led! I hate to use an old cliche, but the world, especially the Santa Cruz world, truly was a better place because of her. I only wish I had the opportunity to meet her in person while she was still with us. Thank you Emma!!
I worked for Emma building trail in 1974. Almost the hardest work ever, but she had no problem keeping up with a young man. Kind and smart. My best to you, Bud.
WOW , Emma what a true country heart, thank you and your family.
Wow! Emma! Thank you for blazing those trails I've enjoyed so much! What a gal! This planet needs more like her.
I always wanted to do endurance riding because of Emma. I never got to do it but both my daughter and 8 year old grand daughter are endurance riders. Thank you Emma.
May God bless you and your family in this time of sorrow.
May you find eternal peace knowing the wonderful legacy you leave behind you. RIP dear Emma. Love, Pam Harris, formerly from Davenport, CA
So sorry to hear of her passing but her memory will live on and on in the woods and forests she loved so much. I consider it a privilege to have ridden the trails she established as a young Santa Cruz County Pony Clubber.
Dear Bud, I enjoyed many areas near Santa Cruz, Calif. but, I do not know your family, and never had known of Emma's work--but--a good friend that DID, shared the news-story about Emma's passing. She also shared how Emma taught her so very VERY much, about making trails. Now I DO know, and I am very thankful for her work. And, oh my, Bud, there is a treasure hidden here, and this is it: The most wonderful thing I learned though, was the love-story between you two(from the obituary article), and: seeing the two pictures that were used--you and Emma,long ago, and you and Emma, in older age, touched my heart--I just now learned of a dear-true-love. May the good Lord bless you, Bud, and give you strength at this hard time, in your loss of Emma. May your family continually be blessed by her memory, so that the sorrows will not hurt as bad. Sincerely, Neebee-Lizzy Gonzalez (Neebeeshaabookway) *Formerly of San Jose, California
With love and respect and my warmest prayers.
To Bud, the McCrary family and friends.
Emma set a high bar of dedication to our land and animal friends. Always warm, friendly and willing to share her passion of horses and trails, I am honored to have been able to cross paths with her. My thoughts are with you.
Sharon Green, formerly Monterey County, CA, now in Ft. Collins CO
To Bud and the entire McCrary clan,
My thoughts are with you and I will be remembering her when I walk those trails.
Dearest Bud and family,
My heart is with you at this emotional and challenging time. What a woman - I knew she was when I got to know you, Bud.
Julie Anne Hopkins
Emma will be sorely missed. My prayer and thoughts are with all of you in this time of sorrow. MBE greatly appreciated the McCrary hospitality.
There isn't a day that goes by that we could forget Emma, always remembering her with great affection & respect. We are custodians of her horse Siera, the extra-ordinary palomino Missouri Foxtrotter pictured with Emma in the article about Emma's life & legacy. We acquired Siera from an interim "owner" 13 years ago when Siera was "retired" from NATRC. Emma took me aside from time to time and shared a lot of stories about Siera, including how much she loved that horse & considered buying her back many times over the years. Siera, now over 30 years old, was just retired to home riding & kids' lessons less than 9 months ago. What is chilling is that on the day Emma passed we almost lost Siera too. She rallied but her days are short-numbered. Emma will have her Siera again, very soon, in heaven. We will miss them both, and both will live a long time in our hearts and memories. Knowing Emma is waiting to saddle up will make our loss of Siera bearable. We hope the McCrary's find comfort in the knowledge of that too. Happy Trails Emma!
My warmest wishes to Emma's family and friends. All of us have lost a hero. I am so thankful for the trails she left behind. We can always ride with her on these trails. And on any trails thru any forests, celebrating her memory.
I enjoyed working with Emma teaching her computers I helped her only a few times but her love of the outdoors and Bud was every evident. I wish the entire family the best and RIP Emma.
What a beautifully written tribute. My husband Jerry and I met Emma on a couple of occasions when we road and camped on the property with MBE. The qualities mentioned in the tribute were so discernable even though we hardly spent any time with her. What a terrific life. Our sincere condolences to her family.
Thank you so much for the opportunity to acknowledge Emma. I didn't know her personally but I was well aware of her work in Santa Cruz Co. during the 17 yrs I lived and road there. I still say Wilder trails are the best I've ridden. I live in Sonoma County now and haven't found much that can compare.I think of her often when I'm out on trail. Thank you Emma, what a woman!!
Her faith in God and her love of nature is an inspiration to me. We will meet again.
It was always a pleasure helping Emma with her NATRC rides as well as riding the Swanton property with her. She was always so pleasant to everyone. She will be sorely missed.
We will all miss Emma so. She is clearing trails for the Angels in heaven now.
I'll always remember riding with Emma in her little pick-up up a trail that needed cleared. As the trail grew narrower and narrower,she wasn't afraid while everyone else in the truck was wide eyed and ready to leap out.
She was a wonderful woman and her energy, bravery and gentle heart will be greatly missed.
To the McCrary family, my thoughts and prayers are with you. Emma has left a wonderful legacy for many generations to enjoy. Emma, You will always be in my heart.
We met Emma at an NATRC ride she put on along with her family. She worked tirelessly year after year to put on those rides - always new trails - always smiling - and we were fortunate to be able to spend some time with her at the NATRC Regional Convention in Livermore. She will be missed - an awesome lady!!!
Our condolences to the McCrary family - there will be new trails awaiting us when we rejoin Emma!
I met Emma years ago and she made quite an impression. She was the real deal. True cowgirls are hard to find. You will be missed. I feel blessed to have met you.
My condolences to the family. The horse community has really lost a cherished member.
Cathy Meehan, Watsonville, CA
My sympathy goes out to the McCrary family. I will always remember Emma. She was a wonderful friend to me. I can only aspire to have the positive attitude and determination she embodied in all endeavors. Thank you Emma, you will always be in my heart.
Love you, Liz Maitoza
My thoughts are with Bud and the entire family. No one was like Emma McCrary. She will be sorely missed here on the coast. To me she embodied the strength and practicality of a pioneer. I went on horse patrol rides with her at Ano Nuevo, and to ride with Emma always meant also taking on trail repairs. No job was too tough. She would stand on the trail and figure out how we could tackle the problem. She also helped lay out the first horse trail on our ranch here in Pescadero. She got on her hands and knees and crawled through poison oak in order to flag the route. We were embarrassed not to follow since she was helping us, but Gene got a whopping case of poison oak. The spirit of Emma and her family has left an indelible mark here on the coast -- words are not enough to express the loss she represents. Blessings to the family. Donna and Gene Richeson
June 27, 2011
I did my first NATRC ride at Emma's. I only rode novice but when I was done I remember getting off my horse and was crying. Not only had I finished the ride but had been on the most beautiful trails that I could imagine. It was hard to keep on time when you had so many great views that you wanted to stop an enjoy. Thank you Emma. I will never forget.
Karen Higgins Morgan Hill/Springfield Oregon
I spent a wonderful summer at the McCrary's home, and I will never forget it..all the horse "wisdom" I ever had I learned from Emma. I have so many great memories of sleeping on the deck and watching the stars fall, getting up early to get the milk that had the cream on the top, all day trail rides all over the place..My sympathy to the family, Emma was a wonderful woman and teacher.
For the entire family of Emma's, I want to express my thoughts and prayers for their loss of this very amazing person. I knew Emma from the Wilder Horse Patrol and always looked forward to seeing her at our meetings and to hear her quiet words of wisdom. She was legendary amongst the members of the horse community for her incredible hard work on the trails...going out with her to help with trail work was not for sissies! She will be greatly missed throughout our community. Happy Trails Emma......I will remember you when I am out riding your trails...
We will all greatly miss this amazing woman. I remember telling Emma one day when I was with her out on a trail, "When I grow up, I want to be just like you". I spent countless hours with Emma making or rerouting trials, cleaning up fallen trees, timing sections of Emma's NATRC Rides and the most enjoyable of all was being able to ride on the most wonderful trails you could ever imagine. Emma is the person that taught me how to chainsaw, she was the best. I got a good laugh one time, Emma was covered in dirt, leaves and chainsaw oil and she asked me if she had any dirt on her face. It was a priceless moment, one that I will always remember. Sometimes we would spend 8 or more hours out cutting trees off of the forest trails after winter storms and she would always run circles around me and she was30 years younger than me. I never saw her bring water or even food for the day. A legend has passed and I am so greatful to have known her, learn from her and call her my friend.
.....Julie Wayne (formerly from Bonny Doon)
Not just the passing of an era, but the passing through a lifetime (mine). Words can hardly express. The joys of horseback riding through pristine terrain, the life lessons learned, the innate inherent wisdom. Emma will be sorely missed. Among my past horsewomen mentors, she's right up there with E. Knight, A. Gibeau, & E. Harrod. All these LADIES "up there" riding the grassy meadows of Heaven now. Godspeed Emma! Thanks for the memories. Happy trails!