A beloved horse attended the funeral of his owner and his heartbreaking display of grief amazed all funeral attendees.
When Brazilian cowboy Wagner de Lima Figueiredo passed away in a tragic motorbike accident on New Year's Day 2016, there was a very special guest at his funeral — his beloved horse and partner, Sereno. In a heartbreaking display of grief and affection that was captured on camera by funeral attendees, the white stallion whinnied as if crying for de Lima, and then laid his head on the coffin to say his final goodbyes to his partner.
De Lima and Sereno were partners for eight years, and performed together in rodeo shows, winning dozens of tournaments and prizes. Sereno was reportedly brought to the funeral in Paraiba, in north-eastern Brazil, by de Lima's brother, Wando de Lima. "This horse was everything to Wagner, it was as if the horse knew what was happening and wanted to say goodbye," said Wando, adding, "All the way to the cemetery he was whimpering and stomping on the ground." Wando told Globo News that Sereno first sniffed the coffin, and once he was sure it was de Lima, laid his head on the coffin to be closer to his cherished friend. Sereno then followed the funeral procession to a cemetery in Cajazeiras, Brazil, whimpering and mourning the entire way.
Francielio Limiera, a close family friend, said that the scene had to be witnessed to be believed. "It was an unbelievable thing to see the way the horse behaved. If I hadn’t been there I wouldn’t have believed it myself," he said. "As we brought the coffin out at the beginning of the funeral, Sereno sounded like he was crying and as if he recognized that his owner was finally leaving him. He pounded the ground with his hooves and kept on whinnying. It was very sad."
Since the demise of his brother, Wando has vowed to care for Sereno. "Sereno will stay with our family forever," he said, explaining how his brother was devoted to the horse and refused to sell him even though several people had offered to buy the white stallion. "Wagner’s life was this horse," said Wando. "He had a passion and a great love for him. Sometimes he would even stop buying things for himself to make sure he could afford to buy horse feed."