A Lancaster County farm community has rallied to raise $40,000 for a local FFA member who has bone cancer.
Tobias Leaman, a senior at Lampeter-Strasburg High School, received about $22,000 during the Sept. 27 livestock sale at the West Lampeter Fair and $20,000 from a car and tractor cruise last weekend at Strasburg Mennonite Church.
Leaman is a member of the school’s Garden Spot FFA chapter, as well as the golf team, National Honor Society and the band, ag teacher Janae McMichael announced at the sale, her voice cracking.
Leaman was raising two market hogs for the fair, but after his diagnosis in July, his medical treatment largely prevented him from caring for the animals.
FFA members and Leaman’s ag teachers stepped in to help, according to Melissa Herr, a fair volunteer.
As Leaman’s pigs were brought into the ring for the livestock sale, members of Garden Spot and Manor FFA — the two main chapters at the small fair — filed into the ring in a show of support.
The two pigs sold for $5,500 apiece —more than any of the grand champions fetched —to Kreider Mulch and Risser Grain.
Then the floor was opened for people to donate in $50 increments to help the Leaman family.
A flurry of buyer numbers went up.
“It was a wonderful evening to watch our community come together,” Herr said.
This generosity comes as the Lampeter-Strasburg community is rallying to support Ryan Smith, a 2018 graduate and basketball player who has leukemia.
A total of 221 animals sold for $225,000 at the West Lampeter Fair livestock sale.
The grand champion hog, exhibited by Regan Herr, sold for $3,250 to MidAtlantic Farm Credit.
The grand champion dairy beef, exhibited by Danae Ranck, sold for $1,200 to Univest Bank Ag Lending.
The grand champion steer, exhibited by Carter Hess, sold for $2,900 to Steve Groff Masonry.
The grand champion market goat, exhibited by Leah Welk, sold for $2,500 to Drew Estate American Tobacco Experience.
The grand champion market lamb, exhibited by Leah Welk, sold for $2,800 to Hess Mills.
The reserve champion market hog, exhibited by Becky Barley, sold for $3,000 to Lancaster Harley-Davidson.
The reserve champion dairy beef, exhibited by Brian Wagner, sold for $1,750 to Providence Autos.
The reserve champion steer, exhibited by Landon Hess, sold for $2,800 to Shultz Transportation.
The reserve champion market goat, exhibited by Alyssa Chalfant, sold for $800 to Hoober Feeds.
The reserve champion market lamb, exhibited by Jenna Smith, sold for $1,500 to A H J Excavating & Landscaping.
To see a video of Leaman’s pigs being auctioned, go to facebook.com/LancasterFarming.