LONGMONT, Colo. — Denver7 viewers helped raise several thousand dollars for the Colorado Therapeutic Riding Center after someone stole its only working truck last month.
The 1999 Ford F-250 was parked at a Longmont hotel on May 26 when it was stolen, executive director Michele Bruhn says.
Denver7 first reported on the theft on June 9 and how it has affected the life-changing work staff do at the center. Bruhn says they've been having to rely on personal vehicles to haul trailers.
"It's not something we really want to do, you know, to rely solely on our volunteers or our staff to get things done out here," she says.
Since Denver7's story aired, the center has received about $18,000 in donations made directly to it. Insurance is also expected to pay out about $12,000, Bruhn says.
Thanks to generous Denver7 viewers, Denver7 Gives raised $5,000 for the center, bringing the total amount of money available to put toward the purchase of a truck to about $35,000.
"Oh, my God. Thank you so much. This is huge. Thank you. I don't know what to say. I'm just so grateful. This is huge," Bruhn said.
Now, the work continues to find a truck at a reasonable price that fits the center's needs.
"We don't need anything with bells and whistles. We only need a truck that is large enough to haul a three-horse gooseneck trailer filled with two horses," she said.
Because $35,000 isn't enough in this crazy used car market, Bruhn says they'll keep collecting donations online and on social media, but she remains grateful for those who've given what they can so far.
"I really can't thank you enough," she said. "This is huge. Thank you so much."