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Days After Tragic Animal Sanctuary Fire, Community Rallies

| March 15, 2014

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Days after a devastating fire tore through the Ark Animal Sanctuary in Houlton, the community is already rallying in big ways.

“People came out of the woodwork – its just 48 hours..less than 48 hours..that this happened,” said Kathryn Knapp.

Stunned and saddened by this tragedy that took the lives of sixteen cats, folks in town were quick to organize a bake sale and silent auction for the Sanctuary – which took place all day Saturday. Residents took the time to make all kinds of sweet treats, area businesses donated all types of auction items, and there was even a raffle for a trip to Cancun. For the community members who came out, though, this wasn’t about prizes. This was about standing behind people that they say have done so much good.

“We want to show our support as a help them get back on their feet,” said Jeremiah Crockett of Houlton.

“I felt like crying when I found out because they’re great people and something horrible happened,” said Morgan Nelson.

“We’ve all watched them work really hard to build a dream and to build a place for these animals,” said Kathryn Harnish, co-organizer of the event.

Folks who came out could also make any sized donation or any pledge they could. For volunteers at the Sanctuary, it will take some time to recover from such a painful loss..but they say the kindheartedness they’ve seen from people all over makes it that much easier.

“It’s a pain that can’t be acknowledged even, that’s how deep it is..the community is helping us heal. The love and the support that has come from this area, the response to it is something we could have never fathomed as the tragedy is something we could have never fathomed,” said Darlene Kenney.

And volunteers like Kenney can be sure that going forward, this community will continue to support them in whatever way they can..

“I think that this was a heartbreaking thing, but we can pull something great out of it,” said Knapp, co-organizer.

“I’d like them to feel love..and hope,” said Harnish.


Kathryn Knapp…694-0373

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