Some people say that young people are selfish and not as giving as they should be. After witnessing three separate acts of kindness at the Ashtabula County Fair, I can say that is definitely not true. The Ashtabula County Fair Junior Fair Sale was a long one, but it was not without generosity.

Edison Cignay was the first young man to impress me. At the beginning of the sale, he agreed to donate half of the money earned from his market chicken project back to the fund being used to collect money for a new poultry barn. That’s right, you read correctly, Cignay agreed to give back half of the money. His pen of chickens weighing 19.18 pounds and taking first place in showmanship sold for $24 a pound.

The buyer, Sandra Campbell should also be commended for stepping up to the plate to ensure Cignay still took some home after his donation.

The second young person was Rebecca Dillon who agreed to donate the money she earned to a sixth grader by the name of Emily Hunt suffering from leukemia. Dillon gained $59 per pound for her 6.40 pound duck.

How many young people do you think would donate the money earned from hard work to the benefit of another young girl? I’m not sure at times myself, but in Ashtabula County, it does happen! I don’t know if the girls were schoolmates or how they knew each other, but what a giving person Dillon has to be.

I did some research while at the fair and found out from a teacher that Hunt attends Pymatuning Valley and underwent a cord blood transplant, but was hospitalized in the intensive care unit for months. Hunt has since been released, but is not recovered and has months of rehabilitation and treatments ahead of her. It is her second battle with leukemia.

The giving did not end with Dillon, though. A hog raised by the Minds on the Go 4-h group was also auctioned off as a community project. It weighed 174 pounds and was also set to benefit the Emily Hunt family.

The price started around $5 a pound and gained some real attention when the price hit $10. There was an electricity in the crowd, and as I looked around, I could see some people crying and others with tears in their eyes.

Bidding on the hog did not end there. After some convincing and hard work by the auctioneers, four buyers went together and purchased the hog for not $10 a pound but… Get this… $20 a pound.

By this time, there wasn’t too many dry eyes in the audience.

The money was again earned for the expenses for the Emily Hunt family. Randy Dearing, Jack Scott— Midway Chevrolet, Mark Stackhouse— owner of Stackhouse Construction and Jason Hockran— H&H Enterprises, showed the audience how to give.

In the end, it was not just the young people who were giving. It was the adults, too, and that is a lesson that no one will forget!

Ashtabula County should be proud!

Kristy Foster Seachrist lives in Columbiana County raising sheep and horses with her husband, Kurt. She earned her degree from Youngstown State University and has worked in both print and broadcast journalism.
Kristy Foster Seachrist
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