Grand champ steer sold 7 times at livestock show yields $21K for Cedar City man with ALS

Grand champ steer sold 7 times at livestock show yields $21K for Cedar City man with ALS{ }(Photo: Iron County Cattlemen's Association / Facebook)

When you mess with the bull you get the horns and in Chad Reid's case, that was more than in his favor.

At a recent Southwest Junior Livestock Show at the Diamond Z Arena in Cedar City, a gesture to help a friend had a domino effect in generosity.

At a typical auction, kids raise and groom their goats, pigs, sheep, and steers for a chance to be called champions. The kids auction off their animals and the money raised generally goes toward college tuition or other expenses. However, this was no typical auction on Sept. 7th and the money raised had an additional purpose.

Bidder and National FFA Organization Advisory Kacie Carballo explained:

Students and their families seek out sponsorship and support from the community throughout the year and hope to see their supporters there on sale day. The students are arranged in order using their placing from the prior days in the competition. Most of the kids have savings accounts for this money and are building their own scholarship fund. Others are using a business model and take their money and put it towards another animal next year. Our community is extraordinary and shows up to support the kids financially every single year, no matter what. Business owners, groups, and individual community members support this show to the tune of $300,000+ every year.

Last week, Donna Christensen with ERA purchased the Iron County Grand Champ steer for $5,000 but then did something unusual. She donated it back for auction. The students showing the steer received the initial bid, but after the steer was donated back, the remainder of the bids were earmarked for Reid spontaneously from those in attendance at the sale.

Reid arrived in Cedar City in 1997 and became the Utah State University Extension county agriculture director & 4-H youth programs faculty. At the time, the Iron County Cattlemen's Association had stopped meeting. Reid got together with some cattlemen and reorganized the association. He has been instrumental in the success of the livestock shows and agriculture programs in southern Utah and throughout the Beehive State.

Tyce, Zone 5 Coordinator, NRCS, said in a prepared statement:

Chad Reid has had a very large influence on the agriculture community far and wide not just Iron County, all surrounding counties of southern Utah . He has had a big influence on the small urban agriculture back yard garden all the way to the largest agriculture producers from large dairy’s and sheep operations to the world class alfalfa hay growers that reside here in southern Utah. His range land experience is unprecedented as he had been a direct prodigea’ of the great Dr. Jim Bowns in whom was a direct influence early in Chad's career. Chad Reid has carried on the same traditions, science, and common sense approach to range land management and has been an astronomical supporter to all range land users and managers of our unique area . We thank, Chad, to the success of agriculture as we know it. He is a true conservation partner to many organizations. Such as the conservation districts, society of range management, farm bureau, livestock associations and state and federal agencies . His knowledge and expertise has been utilized by all of them.

An expression of thanks for all Reid has contributed to the agriculture community for the last 22 years was coupled with well wishes in his battle with Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), also known as Lou Gehrig's disease.

"I have been diagnosed with ALS, Lyme disease and Hashimoto disease. There is no test for ALS so I am not sure what is wrong with me. They diagnosed me with ALS in October of 2018," Reid told 2News.

He was unaware he'd be the recipient of proceeds from the steer sale and was even more surprised of how the $21,000 was generated.

Once Christensen donated the award-winning steer back, the following bidders followed her lead with Milt's Stage Shop buying it for $3,800 and then donating it back. The following bids followed:

  • $4,200.00- Reyes & Kacie Carballo: steer donated back for resale
  • $3,100.00- Mel Clark: steer donated back for resale
  • $3,200.00- Michael Yardley Farms: steer donated back for resale
  • $2,400.00- Bret Whittier: steer donated back for resale
  • $2,300.00- Carter Cattle Company: steer donated back for resale
  • $2,000.00 Hinton Burdick CPA: steer sent to butcher, processing fees and meat will be donated to Iron County Care and Share.

A post on Facebook captured the moment in a livestream with a caption that read:

We love you, Chad! You’ve got ALS, but it sure in the hell doesn’t have you!

Reid's response was humble and concise as a comment on the social media post, "Thanks Donna and all the others that contributed. I sure appreciate all the kindness and generosity!!!!"

Jacob Kendall Benson, E & I Conservation District NRCS Planner, echoed the sentiment in the following statement:

Chad Reid is the most supportive walking encyclopedia I have ever been around. He can answer any question from agriculture or name any plant scientific or common name. He can tell you any bug or pest out there. His knowledge about our area is amazing- from our history to basic and complex science, Chad knows it! He has helped thousands of kids learn about our local rangelands and helped continue the successful efforts of our local livestock show. Chad has a special place in my heart as he has always been someone to look up to for advice and support. Chad is by far the most instrumental individual in the natural resource sector of Southern Utah. He has helped thousands in many, many ways. All agriculture producers large or small has had a beneficial experience with Chad .

Send checks to:
Iron County Cattlemen’s Association
c/o Donna Christensen,
259 West 200 North,
Cedar City, Utah 84720