A facelift for the shelter

Gloria J. Towle, Special to The County
3 years ago

A couple of long-overdue improvements have been made recently to the outside of the Central Aroostook Humane Society building in Presque Isle.  

An anonymous supporter took on the project of creating new signage for our building.  He generously donated and even installed the two beautiful signs. Kyla Veasy from Old Town and a student in the Auto Body program at Northern Maine Community College did the creative paint job. Initially the NMCC carpentry class worked on making new posts, but later it was decided to install the signs directly onto the shelter’s outside walls.  

What a wonderful improvement the new signs make. We couldn’t be happier with the end results.

Next, with the help of a local landscape contractor and the hard work of several of our board members, the front gardens have been finally overhauled.  A new arch, trellis and bench were donated and several of the board members donated new perennials.  

We are hoping that some future repair and repainting on the front of the shelter will be the finishing touches that will be a welcome sight for those visiting.

Here we share the poem “Buster,” written by Elaine Ellis Hotham, a Castle Hill native and longtime Presque Isle resident.


Buster was my friend’s dog, a German Shepherd mix.

His favorite game to play was fetching back a stick.

The stick usually landed on the lawn, but sometimes in the pond.

That landing never bothered him; he’d just go for a swim.

When someone drove into the yard, be it light or be it dark,

Buster was there to greet them, with a tail wag and friendly bark.

Once the farm was overrun with raccoons.

They traveled at night, nocturnal, I assume.

Buster and his master had a job to do. 

Those coons never had a chance with those two.

Buster would chase them up a tree, 

And then bark to his master saying, “Come help me.”

Together they cleaned those coons from the farm. 

No longer would they eat the grain from the barn.

Wherever I went, he tagged along, too, 

Like he was afraid I’d fall in the pond

Or lose my way on that big farm.

He was my protector. I could come to no harm

In the spring, he shed his winter coat;

There were many snarls that had to come out.

With a tool like a mini rake, I did the job.

I’d say “Buster, I got enough hair to make another dog.”

The years flew by. 

Buster got old and so did I.

We both were graying and getting slow, 

But I never knew it was his time to go.

He was last seen out by the barn.

His water and food dish stayed full to the brim

Days spent searching found no sight of him. 

An animal who has reached the end of their days

Will go off to die, that’s what they say.

Never a trace of Buster was found, 

Though many a time, we could feel him around.

A wonderful companion and friend was he.

I’ll cherish his memory, always with me.

(Elaine Ellis Hotham)

If you are looking for a new furry family member, check out the Central Aroostook Humane Society Facebook page for pets that are available.  Please be responsible: spay and neuter.

Gloria J. Towle is the secretary and a member of the board for the Central Aroostook Humane Society.