The two horses are named “Danny” and “Grant.”
Kim Brown is spokesperson for the nine troopers who made up the delegation of trooper equestrian team who came to Cleveland to honor the life of Maples. The Cleveland officer was killed in the line of duty Sunday night as he was responding to back up a county officer regarding a car theft and foot chase.
“The Troopers Association oversees day-to-day caregiving to equestrian members and equipment,” Brown said. “The horses stay at Emerald Stables owned by retired trooper Tim Tarleton.”
Brown added, “The Highway Patrol and Tim get together and all the members are activated for a funeral. Our services go out to any law enforcement or emergency service personnel killed in the line of duty in North Carolina or any bordering state of North Carolina.”
The Caisson Unit has performed 44 funerals since its official beginning in 2007 with six original members. The Caisson unit is based out of Statesville, N.C., according to Brown.
“A little history about the caisson is that they were used to haul artillery and ammunition,” Brown explained. “The box on the front was for the ammunition and the cannon was on the bed.”
The caisson is two pieces of equipment with the ammo box and wagon which fits behind it.
During the Civil War where caissons were first used, casualties and the wounded from the battlefield were carried on the wagon which pulled the cannon. It is seven feet wide and 24 feet in length.
Brown said the wagon was designed from blueprints from the Smithsonian and was built by the Amish.
“We are thankful the North Carolina State Troopers Association and the North Carolina Highway Patrol were with us to honor officer Maples,” said Capt. David Bishop of the Cleveland Police Department.