A handicapped 86-year-old woman transformed her front lawn into a makeshift zoo using stuffed animals to boost her neighbors’ morale amid the COVID-19 crisis.
Nancy Connor from Rhode Island, United States, spent her stimulus money to buy the stuffed toys, NBC-affiliate WJAR reported last Saturday, June 20.
“I went through World War II which was tough but it’s nothing like what’s happening now. Everything is so sad,” Connor was quoted as saying.
“People are walking up and down the street looking very sad and I thought well what can I do? I’m handicapped,” she said. “I can’t go out there and do anything, but people love animals.”
The elderly woman added that she loves animals as well. She said she was happy to use all her stimulus money to purchase the stuffed animals online.
Some of the creatures in Connor’s display are giant stuffed toys while others are statues. She also has a sign stating “Welcome to the Zoo” hanging on her front gate. The woman has a variety of animals in her collection from what looks like an orangutan hanging on the railing of her gate to a lion, zebra, and tiger lounging in her lawn.
Connor intends to keep her zoo in place until the end of October. She would also be happy to accept any stuffed animal donation that may come her way, as per the report.
“Many, many they come every day,” the woman said, referring to her zoo’s visitors. “They come by, they walk and point, and the kids smile. It’s worth all the effort I’ve put into it because everybody looks happy that comes by.”
The 86-year-old set up her zoo this month with the help of a local firefighter who lived nearby. When people come to see her display, Connor sees them from a safe distance.
“I’m usually sitting in the window doing crossword puzzles to keep my mind active,” she said. “I wave at them, makes me very happy.”
The woman ordered more stuffed animals online with the hope that more people would pay her zoo a visit. NVG