XENIA — Family, perseverance and friends helping friends was highlighted July 30 during the sheep breeding show at the 180th Greene County Fair.
Wyatt Percival, a 9-year-old Creative Kids 4H club member, stepped into the sheep show-ring for the first time this year. His grandfather, Jim Percival, a 50-year sheep farmer who has shown the animal around the nation, watched from the sidelines with pride knowing that his grandson was born into the sheep business. Jim’s son and Wyatt’s dad, Jason Percival, would also show sheep growing up. Wyatt’s little brother Wesson additionally enjoyed participated in the show ring this year in some open class sheep events and the sheep decorating contest July 29.
“He’s doing well,” Jim Percival said. “And he’s having fun — that’s the most important thing. He’s learned a bunch.”
Wyatt Percival was qualified to make an appearance at the Ohio State Fair this year and traveled to the state capital Aug. 1 to show. Jim Percival said “it was the best thing to watch.”
Wyatt was assisted in the ring by 16-year-old Grady Page, a participant of the Greene County Career Center FFA program. The Percival family helped Page to first start working with sheep, according to Page’s dad, Todd Page. Todd additionally highlighted that Grady had received a scholarship to help him fund the start of his work with sheep.
“He’s worked hard and he’s put a lot of time in,” Todd Page said.“It’s nice to see everything he’s done come true.”
Todd added that son’s rise to the show-ring didn’t come without bumps in the road.
The family experienced a barn fire in the past, forcing them to start over. Grady’s father also said one of their sheep, Old Dan, was accidentally snipped just before prom this year.
Grady advises young sheep showmen to never give up.
“Perseverance and faith in God is what gets us through,” Todd Page said.