Bendigo Racecourse had never been more silent than on Wednesday morning, as trainers and jockeys moved quietly about their business, not uttering anything of the events of the day before.
They knew there was a gaping hole in the very soul of their close-knit community, a special person who, just the day before had freely moved among them, keen as always to find out how life was treating them and inspiring those who were struggling, was now gone.
Racing folk, neighbours and those who just loved Donna Philpot filled the family home late on Tuesday night just hours after her tragic death.
Earlier that day, paramedics at Bendigo Racecourse worked valiantly but tragically they were unable to save the former Queenslander.
The jockey, mother and wife died from her injuries after the horse she was riding in a trial cannoned into the back of another horse that had suddenly shattered a shoulder.
All of Bendigo were in shock as the news of Philpot's passing filtered through the industry.
According to those close to the family, Philpot was so many things to so many people in the racing community. The loss and heartbreak of the tragic accident was still raw to all who knew her.
As the outpouring of emotions for the woman who still bragged that her biggest win in her racing career was the Cairns Amateurs Cup, the loss seemed to have touched all that knew the family from across Australia.
As a Queensland family said "they were loved wherever they went".
Late on Tuesday night her husband, former jockey and now trainer, Gus Philpot, and their two daughters Jessie and Montana were coming to terms with their tragic loss.
Bendigo trainer Shane Fliedner and his wife Briga are close friends of the Philpots and they too were still trying to make sense of what had happened to this 48-year-old.
"It's just hit everybody so hard. Racing people, in fact anyone in Bendigo that had ever been close to Donna Philpot knew what a beautiful and special woman she was.
"We both arrived at the house in disbelief, Donna had time for everybody. Whatever the problem, whatever was wrong, Donna would give so much of herself.
"On Tuesday morning at the track we were horrified but then so deeply in shock that this woman who meant so much to us all was gone," Fliedner said.
As Bendigo rallied behind the Philpot family who have a small stable of five horses in training, for husband Gus, it's just another tragic chapter he must endure .
In 1983 his brother Danny was very badly injured in a racing mishap in Queensland.
Danny could never ride again.
"He's [Gus] standing up to it with remarkable strength. We're by his side and we'll all get him through. Whatever you say about Donna Philpot is nowhere enough to explain what she brought to Bendigo when the family arrived two years ago, but look it was no one's fault it was a freak accident that could not be avoided." Fliedner said.
Hopefully Bendigo and it's racing community will overcome the grief and terrible sense of loss that Donna Philpot's tragedy has brought to them.
In time, the scars of the fall will pass, and at the Bendigo track of a morning they will reflect by saying "I was just so proud to call Donna Philpot my friend."