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Buck and Lee Roy’s Honor take the cake at governor’s charity steer show

Brandon Sutfin of rural Montezuma is shown with Lee Roy's Honor, a 1,314- pound crossbred steer that sold for $20,200 at the Governor's Charity Steer Show, Aug. 15 at the Iowa State Fair. The steer was shown by Craig Lang, president of the Iowa Farm Bureau. Joining him are family members, representatives of Rain and Hail Insurance and members of the Poweshiek County Farm Bureau.

Steers owned by two Poweshiek County teens received top honors, and brought the highest bid at the 2009 Governor’s Charity Steer Show at the Iowa State Fair, Aug. 15.

Buck, a 15-month-old crossbred steer raised by James McCain of rural Malcom, was named overall grand champion out of the 25 steers at the show. Buck was shown by Mark Pearson of WHO Radio’s Big Show, and sponsored by the Iowa Banker’s Association. Featherlite Coaches purchased Buck for $5,000 at auction.

“It was a nice honor,” said McCain, who was showing a steer in the charity auction for a second year in a row. McCain knew the tide was turning in his favor when Buck was given the “Lucky No. 13” ear tag prior to the charity event. Buck had finished second in his class at the 2009 Poweshiek County Fair. McCain purchased the steer from Dennis Fraker of Fraker Show Cattle in Brooklyn. It weighed in at 1,350 pounds and had a 3.5-pound (per day) rate of gain, and a 20-inch ribeye.

“That is a pretty big steak,” said McCain, a junior at Montezuma High School. Record-breaking steer Lee Roy’s Honor, a 15-month-old 1,314-pound crossbred steer raised by Brandon Sutfin of rural Montezuma went down in the record books as the highest selling steer in the 27-year history of governor’s charity show.

Named in honor of the late Lee Roy Cheney of rural Deep River, Sutfin’s grandfather, the steer brought a recordbreaking $20,200, and was purchased by Rain and Hail Insurance of Des Moines.

“I was just shocked that it brought that much,” said Sutfin, a senior at Montezuma High School.

Bill Sutfin, Brandon’s father, said that Lee Roy and Brandon were best buddies. Lee Roy was killed in a tractor-vehicle accident on Highway 21 eight years ago. “That is why he (Brandon) thought it would be nice to name it in his memory,” said Bill of the steer. Lee Roy’s Honor was named grand champion at the 2009 Poweshiek County Fair.

The Iowa Farm Bureau sponsored Lee Roy’s Honor, and Craig Lang, president of the Iowa Farm Bureau showed the steer. Sutfin said he was surprised that Lee Roy’s Honor nearly doubled the previous record of $11,000, set a couple years ago.

“We were standing in the ring and reached the record and it just kept going higher and higher,” said Sutfin. “I was really surprised.”

Brownells Inc. of Montezuma was the other bidder for Lee Roy’s Honor. Sutfin said he had lots of family members at the charity event showing their support, and that Lang did a good job showing the steer.

“It was a fun experience,” said Sutfin. “I knew it was for a good charity.”

Charity events raised $123,150 This year’s Governor’s Charity Steer Show raised $112,650 for the Ronald McDonald Houses of Iowa, and $10,500 for the Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation. The Iowa Beef Industry Council and the Iowa Cattlemen’s Association sponsor the annual steer show and auction.

Governor Chet Culver hosted the event, which was held in the Livestock Pavilion.

Since its inception in 1983, the Governor’s Charity Steer Show has raised $1,721,578 for charity. The money will benefit the Ronald McDonald Houses of Des Moines, Iowa City, and Sioux City. All of the houses are located near hospitals and provide a “home away from home” for families of seriously ill children.

The Iowa State Fair Blue Ribbon Foundation will use the money to make improvements to the fairgrounds. Emcees for the show were farm broadcaster Bob Quinn, WHO Radio, and Andy Petersen, WMT Radio. The auctioneer for the sale was Phil Schooley from Bloomfield Livestock. Assisting Schooley in catching bids were ringmen Mike Sorensen of Livestock Plus, Jason Lekin of Tama Livestock Auction, Tom Rooney of The Midwest Marketer, and Ross Butler.

“Ronald McDonald kept the show lively and delighted the crowd,” noted a press release on the charity event.

UPDATED September 1, 2009 1:58 PM

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