Police officers are helping keep a tree farm in Manchester open for at least one more season.
Steele's Tree Farm was on the cusp of closing down for good.
“We had the property,” Lynn Steele said. “Little did we know it was 24-hour day, all-year-long hobby, but we love it."
Steele and her husband, Arthur, cared for their 19-acre farm for 30 years as they raised trees for Christmas.
“It just made him happy, which was good enough for me,” Steele said.
Steele lost her husband this past September after he fell off a bulldozer and hit his head. Limited by multiple sclerosis, Steele said she knew she wouldn't be able to carry on the work and passed on the difficult news to her community with a hand-written message.
“Due to the passing of owner, Arthur Steele, Steele's Tree Farm was going to be basically closed forever,” Steele said in the message.
Manchester Police Officer Dan Doyon said he saw that message and stepped in.
“I brought it to my sergeant's attention here to maybe it's something we could step in, volunteer our time and help them out,” Doyon said.
“For the last year, she has been tending those trees from her mobility scooter,” Manchester Police Sgt. Marc Hughes said. “We didn't want to see it end like that."
Doyon and his fellow officers quickly took to YouTube and learned the art of selling trees.
“I've never had a live Christmas tree in my life. This was a huge learning curve," Doyon said.
They sold 38 on their first day turning the proceeds over to Steele.
“Emotionally what it has meant to me that people have reached out to be nice and to help out,” Steele said. “And that means so much, more than anything else I can think of."
Officers will be at the farm again this Saturday and next from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
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