‘Better than before:’ A year and a half later, Newark backyard sanctuary restored


NEWARK, N.Y. (WROC) — Just about a year and a half ago, we met Noel Harradine and Kevin Moody.

Starting in 2014, they starting working on an incredible backyard sanctuary, a place to spend their retirement… After they were reunited decades after being college sweethearts.. But we first met them when their little slice of heaven was ruined by manure runoff.

“Not only was the pond dead from that point, it’s going to be dead for quite some time,” said Moody, in 2020.

“Our neighbor farmer spread liquid manure not too far from our house, and there was a massive rainstorm, and it all came into the pond,” said Harradine. “Devastating, I can’t even explain, just devastating.”

During the deep pandemic in the spring of 2020, they had no place to get away to at their own home.

The farmer next to Harradine and Moody declined comment in 2020, though Harradine says that with help from Newark, they were able to fix the problem; while the farmer paid for the lion’s share of the work.

“We pumped literally a million gallons of water up to the field here,” Harradine said. “(The pond was dredged) to get all the manure out.”

But now, the sanctuary is now back home to dozens of bird species, deer, turtles, fish, and a cat named Maggie.

“It was better than it was. We just feel really good about it,” said Harradine.

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