The number to watch at the Otoe County Fair Auction was far from number No. 1.  
A very special blessing took place on No. 75 when nine year old Taylor Griepenstroh, who lost her mother Kala to cancer in May, was selling her very first hog in her first year of 4-H.
The 240 pound blue ribbon hog was purchased for an Otoe County record of $22 per pound (the base market price is 59 cents).  
Friends say that Taylor’s mom Kala Griepenstroh lived a life of shining her light on others and loving her community.
She lost her battle to stage four breast cancer May 23, 2019 leaving behind her husband, Lance, and children, Taylor and Kaden.
A friend of Kala’s, who wished to remain anonymous, had heard of this being done in other counties, and she talked to Taylor’s 4-H group about how to make it happen.  Kala showed pigs in Cass County 4-H as a kid, and she always enjoyed it and promoted 4-H with Taylor. The friend said, “We knew it meant so much to her that we wanted to do something to make it special for Taylor.”
They posted to a group of Kala’s friends saying they wanted to buy Taylor’s first hog and gave people the opportunity to donate.  A group of individuals worked to spread the word.
At the swine show Saturday, funds started coming in, and they had $1,000 by 2 p.m. that day.  Word spread, and by 4 p.m. on Sale Day (Sunday), they thought they had the final total, but another $1,300 came in between then and the bidding on Lot No. 75 just before 6 p.m.
Kala’s friend said, “This is truly what 4-H is about- being students of agriculture and students serving their community.  Kala truly lived the 4-H pledge shining her light on others.

So that’s what we attempted to do is shine that same light with the generosity of the community.”  It all came together when 70 different donors contributed over $5,000 for the purchase of Taylor’s first hog.  
The auction on lot No. 75 began as any other.  Taylor’s dad, Lance, was at the gate as she went in with her animal. Lance recorded the moments on video as the bid went higher and higher. Bittersweet tears from members of the audience greived the absense of Kala while celebrating her daughter.
Taylor’s dad, Lance, was overwhelmed with the generosity of the community, and, later had to explain it to Taylor, who didn’t quite understand what was so special about her auction. People were remembering her mom for the positive person she was and the light that she shone on so many people.
Lance gave voice to his feelings in a social media post. “Wow! I really don’t know what to say, but thank you for everyone in our area that has been so extremely supportive to our family in so many different ways, especially over the last two and a half  years. We couldn’t ask to live in a better, more supportive area than we do. We have been so extremely blessed! We can’t thank everyone enough. The support means more than anyone will ever know. This being Taylor’s first year of 4-H, she didn’t totally understand what this all meant. After I explained it to her, her words were, ‘I don’t deserve all of that dad, can we give that money back to everyone that donated to it? Really what do I need that for?” I think this rain this afternoon was Kala’s tears of joy and appreciation falling upon us from Heaven above! Thank you so much to all!”