Thanks for help with rescued calves

To the editor:

Well, I want to start with a big thank you to several people who have jumped in to help with the calves and feeder calves rescued on New Year’s night.

Me, my son Luke, and two grandsons, Waylon and Garrett took two families out help rescue these animals. When I pulled in, all I could hear was bawling calves. Then took a walk by a terrible, deplorable pen, where, part between the houses and the slop smell made me very upset.

My grandsons and other helpers already had them loaded — a muddy, stinking, sloppy mess. Can’t believe someone would have these young calves in such conditions. Then when we backed the second trailer into the calf hut area, I first saw a balled up little body of a dead calf! And just so much bawling from being hungry and cold. We started loading these 12 calves still alive. I saw four dead bodies, but they then reported 13 bodies. Wow.

It was just horrible. But we got them out, hauled to clean facilities and other helpers were on hand to help feed and care for them. Don’t know you folks, but thank you so much!

Two of the calves were so weak, we had to hold them up and help to get the milk down them! But now into the fourth day, all are doing better and well cared for!

I so want to thank Kelly Ward and our Sheriff John Lenhart for showing so much interest in this case. I am almost 69 years old, raised on dairy farms and have had been around cattle all my life, and I’m not a vet, but do know if action hadn’t been taken, there would have been more losses! That’s just a fact!

Again, thank you everyone who helped. I would really like to thank a Riverside High School and FFA member for helping show up early in the mornings for the feedings and great help. I’m sure you’ll go far in the future, Shelby Nicholl. Let’s hope this doesn’t happen again in our county!

Thank you,

Dick Vondenhuevel