Children's Donation Shows Faith
By Julie Huss
DERRY — Faith gave her special visitors a glance and proudly stood tall near her stall at Greenwood Stables on Frost Road.
Faith, a sable-colored 17-year-old mare welcomed a class of preschoolers from Nutfield Cooperative School last week who wanted to stop by to present a special gift.
And for Faith, it was not only a gift of friendship, but one that would help her continue living a strong, healthy life at Greenwood.
The children donated $219 to the stable in Faith's name to help the horse continue to thrive.
Faith was rescued last February by Greenwood owner Julie Hersey and brought to Derry to heal. Hersey found the horse in Loudon, neglected, starving, and injured.
Hersey first heard of Faith's situation through a post on an equine Web site that described the horse as being "in dire straits" and needing a rescue.
On Feb. 2, Hersey and her husband Dan, drove to a farm in Loudon to see Faith. They persuaded her owner to sell the animal for $1.
Faith was in big trouble when they rescued her, Hersey said. She was standing on a sheet of ice, surrounded by barbed wire fence, no food or water, and a nylon halter cutting into her nose. Not only was she starving, but open wounds oozed on her legs.
"When we got there, it was totally heartwrenching," Hersey said. "And before we were out of the guy's driveway, we were on the phone with the vet. We were not sure if she would have to be put to sleep."
Once in Derry, the horse had several touch-and-go times during her first weeks at Greenwood, Hersey said. She was unsteady on her feet and malnutrition wreaked havoc on her body.
"The first two weeks we almost lost her five times," she said. "But's she's a fighter."
After undergoing veterinarian care and months of good care and rehabilitation, the horse is on her way and since living at Greenwood, Faith has gained 200 pounds since those painful days last winter and is doing well, Hersey said. The once starving, emaciated animal is sporting a sleek, healthier look.
"And she just got brand new horseshoes put on yesterday," Hersey told the preschoolers, who gathered around the stately horse to take a peek. Many of the children sported colorful rain boots for the dusty, hay-strewn occasion.
Nutfield Cooperative School teacher Suzanne Mitchell said the school children make regular visits to Greenwood Stables to learn about the animals living there. When they heard about Faith's plight last winter in the local news, the school community wanted to do something to help.
"We saw Julie and the newspaper article and thought what a great community project," Mitchell said, adding the children and their families collected $219 to donate to Faith's care.
Hersey filed animal cruelty charged against the horse's owner with Loudon police. She hopes more people come forward with information about neglected animals at that farm.
Hersey said she is still trying to find out a little more about Faith's history and is happy the horse is getting stronger.
"She's done it, she's pulled through," Hersey said.
Donations like those from Nutfield Cooperative School continue to come in to help Faith. Anyone wanting to learn more about Faith's journey to Derry can visit Greenwood Stables online at http://www.greenwoodstables.com/.
The article can be seen here at: http://www.derrynews.com/derry/local_story_140150149.html
A special thanks to Suzanne Mitchell for all of your continued support! Please bring the little ones back to visit anytime!