CONNOQUENESSING TWP — The holidays were extra special for the Butler County Humane Society, which received an astounding gift from a pet-loving business owner on Christmas Eve.
At about the time Santa was rounding up the reindeer for his flight around the world, Butler County Ford owner Cathy Glasgow called Jennifer DiCuccio, the executive director of the Humane Society, to tell her a new 2017 Ford transit van was waiting at the corner of Main and Wayne streets for DiCuccio to pick up.
“I felt they could use it,” Glasgow said matter-of-factly Thursday. “They are great people who do great work.”
She said the van was a leftover at the dealership, and while she was unsure of the amount it could be sold for, the van's value is more than $30,000.
To say DiCuccio was shocked would be the understatement of 2019.
“I was very taken aback,” she said. “I was like, 'A van? Are you sure?'”
On Jan. 1, she picked up the white vehicle, which Butler County Ford will outfit with the Humane Society logo in the near future.
It will be used to transport animals to veterinary appointments and haul large items to fundraisers, in addition to many and varied other purposes, all of which will benefit the animals at the Humane Society.
“To have somebody say 'Here's a vehicle. We want to donate it to you?'” DiCuccio said. “This is a blessing and so rare.”
Glasgow and her family are longtime supporters of the Humane Society, having donated, served as sponsors for the annual Furball fundraiser and sat on the society's board of directors over the years.
DiCuccio said several employees at Butler County Ford have adopted pets from the Humane Society, including Glasgow herself.
“I have a ginger cat from the Humane Society,” Glasgow said. “He's a big spoiled baby.”
DiCuccio said the Humane Society worked since April to raise the funds to replace a nonworking van it owned.
The group's other van had very high mileage and was on the brink of breakdown.
“This van will replace it,” DiCuccio said. “We use our vehicles every single day.”
She is amazed by Glasgow's generous gift, which will allow Humane Society personnel to focus on their mission of finding forever homes for the dogs and cats housed there.
“Can you think of a better way to kick off 2020?” DiCuccio said.