Updated: Thursday, 31 Jan 2013, 6:48 PM EST
Published : Thursday, 31 Jan 2013, 5:46 PM EST
NORTH STONINGTON, Conn. (WTNH) -- Police say they are close to making arrests in the case of some cows shot in North Stonington. One of those cows had to be put down and a fund has now been set up to help the farmers who own the animals.
There is a romanticism of New England farming, a rhythm of progress that remains tied to ancestral roots when this land was first touched by settlers.
Farmers, of course, see beyond that picturesque perspective, and realize it's work, hard work, rewarding work, but often work fraught with obstacles, as 18-year-old Asa Palmer knows all too well.
"Things like that don't happen, it's not something you have to check on to make sure your cows aren't shot," said Palmer.
Last week, two of Asa's dairy cows were shot at his father George's North Stonington farm. A bullet passed through this animal's ear and is lodged in its back and the other had to be destroyed.
"It was the worst thing I've ever seen, the cow jaw was completely blown off," said Palmer.
" And it makes you think, why," asked News 8's Jamie Muro.
"Yeah, what did the cow ever do to them," said Palmer.
The loss of livestock has resonated 54 miles away where traffic is more common than tractors. A state representative has started a fund at Chelsea Groton Bank to raise money to encourage rather than discourage a young man from farming.
"The Palmer's are an institution in North Stonington and farming, and Asa wants to do this," said Rep. Diana Urban. "Let Asa know how much we care about what happened to him, that we want him to have the opportunity to be a farmer."
Asa says this farm has been in his family for four generations and he wants to be the fifth. Owning his own cows was a start. Farming is tough, he just didn't realize it would be brutal.
"I don't search for charity, I think it's great they are setting that up," said Palmer.
The tools have changed since America was enjoying it's agricultural birth when oxen pulled the plow but one could argue the make-up of farmers is much the same; the work ethic, the determination, the love of the land. How can we not get philosophical about that?
"I want to be a dairy farmer," said Palmer. "If anyone comes out and tries farming, I think they'd really like it."
The "Angel Fund" for Asa Palmer is up and running and ready for donations. Palmer raised Angel, the cow who had her jaw shot off and had to be euthanized. Donations are now being accepted at any Chelsea Groton Bank.
Mail donations may be made to the "Angel Fund," Chelsea Groton Bank, P.O. Box 11, North Stonington, CT, 06359. The phone number is (860) 572-4050.
"We have already heard from many good people. North Stonington is showing its true colors and we are reaching out to Asa and his family," said Rep. Urban in a statement. "Not only were these animals shot but they were left to suffer. I want to thank all the people who have called me wanted to offer a helping hand and willing to make donations."