Spring ‘Folly’ is a beautiful sight

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, September 11, 2002

Features Editor

Donkeys have been in the Colley family for more than 40 years and, if "Folly" is any indication, they will be there for many years to come.

Molly gave birth to a baby donkey Monday and Lummie Colley immediately christened her "baby" Folly. Yesterday, Folly was enjoying a romp in the pasture with Molly, Jolly and Dolly Colley.

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"If we keep having babies, we’ll run out of names," Mrs. Colley said, laughing. "But, I don’t ever want to run out of donkeys. They are my babies and I enjoy them so much. So does everyone in my family and all the neighbors, too."

The first pair of Colley donkeys came from the Alabama Baptist Children’s Home in Troy some 40-odd years ago.

"Someone had given a load of donkeys to the Children’s Home and they didn’t know what to do with them because the feed bill was so high," Mrs. Colley said. "So they gave us two of them and we’ve had donkeys ever since."

As soon as the donkeys were in the pasture, Mrs. Colley fell in love with the "beautiful" animals.

"How anyone can think a donkey is beautiful, I don’t know," she said, "but they are beautiful in my sight. They are black with little white faces and I just love them all."

The donkeys have found favor with the Colley family and have never lacked for anything – including love.

"Tip (Dr. J.O. Colley Jr.) used to say I spent more feeding my animals than I did feeding my family," she said. "Well, I do feed them well."

The donkeys are pampered by Mrs. Colley and her family and neighbors come calling with apples and carrots, much to the delight of their "mama."

"I like to see people enjoy the donkeys, especially the children," she said.

Mrs. Colley has never seen a death in the Colley donkey family.

"I couldn’t stand that," she said. "We give them away and, if they die, I don’t see that."

Mrs. Colley has also never sold a donkey. She gives them to others just as they were given to her.

"We started with two and we’ve probably had 22," she said. "I hope to always have donkeys in the pasture. After 40 years, it just wouldn’t seem right without them."