In Oberlin, Ohio, 43-year-old Michelle Groot died from complications of an unexpected medical condition. Just two months later, her 9-year-old daughter, Gracie, entered her first 4-H auction with the first animal she raised, a sheep she named Starlight Gem.
Young Gracie has cerebral palsy. When the bidding for Starlight Gem started, lots of area business got involved. And when it was over, the winning bid was a record-setting $27 a pound, or, at Starlight Gem’s weight of 135 pounds, $3,645.
Says Gracie’s aunt and Michelle’s sister, Angie Yaworsky: “It was a wonderful tribute to my sister to support her child like this. My sister always showed sheep years ago when she was in 4-H. That was her thing, and she was excited about Gracie showing a sheep.”
Grace said she really misses her mom and wished she was there to see her show Starlight Gem.
Says Gracie: “She loved me a lot, and she loved 4-H.”
The young girl said the fully intends to carry on in 4-H… just like her mom did.
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