Luke Bryan and his wife Caroline have brought joy to so many children and their families over the past few years with their involvement in the Brett Boyer Foundation and Brett’s Barn.
The mission of the Foundation, named after their niece Sadie Brett Boyer, who passed away from CHD (Congenital Heart Disease) a few years ago, is to raise awareness for Congenital Heart Disease (CHD) and fund research to advance treatment options. It is also their mission to spread the love and awareness that Brett filled the entire family with for the wonderful, capable people living with Down Syndrome.
Luke told us, “When we lost our niece Brett, Caroline had the idea to do a barn in her memory. We lost Brett to Congenital Heart Defect and so many kids out there have this condition. We get a lot of Vanderbilt kids to come to the barn and see the animals. The Brett Boyer Foundation gets to us and we try to make a really special moment for the kids and the families.”
He added, “Brett’s Barn is a product of grief. Oh, how I hate that word. Even more, the fear and darkness that loom all around. It’s the kind of pain you feel in every part, every inch, of your whole body. As much as you want the world to just stop turning, it doesn’t. Life goes on…with or without the ones we love,”
Brett’s Barn, which is home to rescued horses, pigs, kangaroos, dogs, llamas, goats and more, was borne of a promise Caroline made to then one-month-old (Sadie) Brett.
Caroline wrote on the foundation’s website. “Unfortunately, our family knows the feelings of grief all too well. We also know that we can choose 2 paths in life. One of bitterness/anger, or one of happiness and hope. We choose happiness over hurt. We choose to honor Brett, just as she continues to honor our family every day. We choose to help children, families, and precious animals.”
She continued, “After Brett passed away, I decided to keep a promise I made to her when she was about a month old…a white pony! We found the pony at a local animal rescue facility. Along with the white pony, we adopted another pony, goat and pig. Over the next few months, the barn continued to grow. The promise I made to Brett, for one white pony, quickly turned into a full-blown miniature animal farm! Brett’s Barn now has over 20 animals!”