James was growing older and he was busy going to school, spending time with his friends and 4-H club. When he had a difficult day at school he could always go into the coop and hang with his “girls.” They trusted and depended on him every day and they would always make him feel better. He always found time for them and was sure to see to all their needs.

One cold morning, near the end of winter, James found Goldie in the coop flopping around and having a hard time walking. He brought her into the house to see what was wrong. She could barely stand up and was getting weaker as the day went by. She wouldn’t eat or drink. He decided to make a comfortable bed of hay for her in the basement to separate her from the others. Goldie continued to get weaker that night and into the next day. I let James stay home from school so he could care for her. He called his 4-H leader and she told him what he had feared – that Goldie wasn’t going to make it through the night.