It's the end of an era in the northernmost parts of Cape May County. It's not the one that anybody wanted either.

To be fair, it wasn't exactly an "era," but it was a fun couple of months for the residents of the Marmora section of Upper Township right outside of Ocean City. The famous brown cow that was spotted in the woods in summer of 2022, later to be affectionately called "Mootilda," gave people a lot of laughs, some anxiety, but most importantly, a cause to get behind.

Mootilda brought out the hearts of so many people in the community that were hoping to bring her to safety. Nobody deserves more credit for that than Anne Merrill. She's the local South Jersey woman that made it her mission to capture the cow in an effort to give it a better life.

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In the months since Mootilda was first spotted in the woods, Merrill made sure the cow was hydrated and fed as best she could. She's no farmer, after all. Still, with Merrill's help and the assistance of some locally-based good Samaritans, arrangements were finally made for Mootilda to live the remainder of her life on a rescue in Salem County once she could finally be apprehended.

Unfortunately, we now know that won't be the fate for Mootilda after all. It was confirmed by multiple sources that the original owner of the cow apprehended her and sent her off to the butcher. Now, because people have developed a level of affection and caring for Mootilda, that's not the ending most of us were rooting for.

Still, there's not much that can be done about it now. Apparently, the deed is done. I, for one, have sooo many questions regarding how this ending came to pass. For one, if the original owners were the ones to get her, what was stopping them from putting in the effort over the past few months while she was free roaming around Upper Township?

I'll fall down a rabbit hole if I pose too many questions, so I'll simply state that I'm sad to hear about this ending for Mootilda and, like most people following the story on social media, hoped she would finally make it to the sanctuary.

RIP Mootilda 😢


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