ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – The Fort Worth Stock Show cancellation has affected agricultural families across the state, including a family of five in the Big Country with triplets.
“Rance was actually, he was five pounds, so he went straight to the regular nursery and the girls were 3.4 and 3.12, and they stayed in the NICU for about, almost a month,” said Fawn Gotcher.
From the newborn intensive care unit to raising cattle on the same land as their mother, raising cattle has become a family tradition.
“The kids are showing some that we’ve raised, some that my parents raised, so it’s kind of like several, several generations,” said Mom.
The triplets consist of one boy, Rance, and two identical twin girls, Steely and Gentry, and they have been showing steers since they were 8 years old.
“I just really like it, I’d like to do this with my kids,” said Rance Gotcher.
And they wake up at 5:45 in the morning every day.
“We come out here and feed, go get them out of the hay lot, and put their troves in and feed them, and then go inside and get ready for school, and then come outside and turn them out and go to school,” said Steely Gotcher.
They say the idea of not being able to show in Fort Worth this year was hard for everyone in the family.
“Oh, it was horrible. It was heart breaking,” said Mom.
“I was just really sad,” said Rance.
“We were really disappointed,” said Steely.
“I was kind of like sad and discouraged because we’ve been working really hard,” said Gentry Gotcher.
The trio worked for more than a year to raise animals bigger than themselves.
“They work hard every day, I couldn’t ask more out of them than I do,” their dad said.
“And they can do a lot of things on their own that some kids their age can’t, probably some adults can even do,” said Mom.
Luckily for the triplets, Battle of the Cattle will be putting on a show in Abilene called The Patriot, to make up for losses the livestock industry is facing.
Excited would be an understatement for these kids and their proud parents.
“It’s an adventure every day, but they work good together, they play hard together, it’s all we can ask,” said Dad.
Battle of the Cattle is run by Shane and Tonya Meier, who decided to host an event for all the students who would normally be showing their projects in Fort Worth, San Antonio or Houston, but can’t because of COVID-19.
This is not the first time the Meiers will be hosting a show in Abilene, as they also hosted a show in July. But the Meiers said they loved working with the Taylor County Expo Center, and are looking forward to hosting again.
The event will take place February 2-7.
For information on how to register for The Patriot, click here.
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