Beth Lutz was devastated when four of her beloved alpacas were killed. The story touched one particular woman, who offered her condolences in the most unexpected way.
Raising alpacas on her York County, Pennsylvania, farm is a special activity for Lutz, who treats each one like a member of her family. Like many other alpaca owners, she uses the fleece to create yarn and other materials.
Alpacas are gentle and generally defenseless animals in the face of an unexpected attack. When a dog jumped Lutz’s fence in early April, she could only grieve the loss of four alpacas. A fifth sustained a serious injury.
“It’s just sadness when I think about how the animals must have suffered and I’m sad for the loss,” Lutz told WPMT.
Although a new baby alpaca helped bring some joy to the farm, Lutz still found herself reeling from the attack. She decided to honor them with a colorful shawl.
“I just happened to be in the barn, and I realized I had this fleece. It was from one of the boys who was killed,” Lutz told the York Daily Record.
With help from her friends, the shawl was completed in the course of one day. Once woven, it was a harmony of bright green, burgundy and yellow colors.
Lutz presented the shawl at the Mid-Atlantic Alpaca Association jubilee in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Hoping to earn $800 for it at an auction later that day, she shared the significant story behind the shawl with those attending.
When the auction began, Lutz was immediately shocked. The bidding quickly reached $800 and continued to rise.
The winning bid was much higher than Lutz could ever have anticipated at $1,750.
Lutz, overcome with emotion and in tears, felt compelled to thank the bidder personally. When she did, she got an incredible surprise.
The bidder, Lynn Edens, draped the shawl over Lutz’s shoulders. “I bought this for you,” Edens told her.
“I haven’t stopped crying since. The kindness and love I felt this weekend was overwhelming,” Lutz wrote on Facebook.
Although nothing will truly replace the loss Lutz experienced, she will always have the gifted shawl as a reminder of her alpacas and her compassionate community.
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