About five thirty this morning we got a phone call. It was a guy going past our place who called and said that he saw "a lot of cattle on the road, and do you think they are yours'?"
We didn't even hesitate, we got out of bed and ran outside. I got some sorting sticks as Ron started the truck. We flew down there and instantly knew it.
They were surprisingly headed home. Our friend that called us had told us that he had seen some headlights but didn't see them anymore so that car must have turned around.
Instantly a sick feeling came over me.
Ron and I headed down the road a little and D said, "yup, there it is, in the ditch."
We drove up to it forcing more cows into the ditch with the pickup. The van was up on the wheels but all smashed in in the front and I didn't see anybody moving. I got sicker.
Then from behind the van a guy comes walking up, white as a ghost. "I crashed into these cows and some are dead. Are they yours?"
"Yes, are you okay?" We both were in the poor guy's face.
He said he was okay and kept apologizing about it. One heifer was dead on contact,. but another was moaning and crying. The worst thing is we had to leave that poor kid with the wreck, the cows and a flashlight so he could shine oncoming traffic so we could go get the neighbors. The other guy had taken off for work, he didn't know about the accident.
Cody ( aka our superboy) was already down getting the wayward cows back in the alleyway. The neighbor came with his tractor, one of the cows that we had to shoot was extremely wild and made worse by being hurt. It took them a good half and hour. She kept hiding in the corn.
The sheriff came after a while and looked at the grim scene. He was the nicest guy in the world...I'm glad I voted for him.
After that we got them all cleared off the road thanks to or wonderful neighbor and his tractor. Then, I noticed one in the ditch and called back home. The came to get her, she was the first one we had to shoot.
The next one was a real bummer. We came up on her and I noticed that she was the one that would come up to me and eat grape vines when I fed her. Black, purple tag 22. You could tell she was hurt since she was doing the belly crawl through the bean field and back out again. You have to make some tough choices in our line of work, and since we didn't want to see her not being used, I snuck out there through the ditch grass and temped her, but she was already too hot, meaning that she had already had a fever. We put her out of her misery and noticed that her back leg was broke in half with just hide hanging it together. That was really tough on me because she was my bud.
So after all this, and the guy's ride came, I gave him a hug and told him that he was on the "right side" of God's plan. I told him that he should've been dead or hurt and I was never so happy to see someone walk in my life.
With that said, this was especially hard on Ron since this is the first time it's has happened and he's fed cattle for a lot of years. It was hard on both of us because its hard to lose an animal for any reason. We really take pride in our farm, our care and our love of the animals here.
So...happy trails and hug your family...we are so fortunate and this could have been really ugly.
Suzanne, Fairchild Farmgirl