KINGSTON TOWNSHIP, Pa. -- An educational dairy farm in Luzerne County is mourning the loss of a beloved cow that died over the weekend.
The Lands at Hillside Farms is a place for people to learn about agriculture and Cookie the cow really connected with hundreds of visitors.
As a herd of dairy cattle took a break from eating at The Lands at Hillside Farms to say hello, visitors and staff can't help to notice one of their favorites is missing.
Cookie, a lineback dairy cow, passed away over the weekend at the age of 10.
"Cookie came to us in early 2009. Actually, April 9, my daughter and I went to an auction together to buy her. We got her because she was a breed different than the breed that we had. Originally, we just got her as an educational example, and she performed so well that we ended up converting the entire herd to her breed," said executive director Chet Mozloom.
Cookie retired at the age of 6 and spent the rest of her days out in the field with other cattle.
"It's very tough," said farmer Joe O'Brien. "These cattle really respected Cookie, especially as a herd leader, so when we would rotate our fields down here, Cookie would kind of show them the ropes, what field to go to and where to go next, and she is technically one of the grandparents of all of these. So all of these animals behind me owe Cookie a great debt of gratitude."
"Probably about 20 percent of the herd is related to her, you know, daughters, granddaughters, and pregnant granddaughters, and it's a wonderful thing, and a lot of them look just like her," Mozloom said.
"These cows carry on her legacy, and it just makes us grateful every day for these animals. They do tremendous things for us in many ways," O'Brien added.
When the news spread of Cookie's passing, the cow's impact outside the farm with visitors came as a surprise to Mozloom.
"I was shocked to see how many people took the time to take a photo with her, I had no idea. Maybe three people? No, it's hundreds," said Mozloom.
Mozloom encourages you to help Cookie's legacy live on in your own way by sharing your photos with Cookie, if you have one, on Facebook.