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Jeanette Riffle: Grand Champion Steer

The Free Press WV

Pictured is Kraden Mitchell, son of Richard and Angela Stewart Mitchell of Frametown. Kraden’s angus/char, weighing in at 1, 225 pounds at fair time, won Grand Champion Steer at the Braxton Co. Fair of 2017. He named the steer, Fred.  Kraden also won ribbons and plaques besides highest gain of weight for his steer. He is my great nephew on the Stewart side. He is my brother, Elder Roger Stewart’s, grandson. Marina Marks Stewart is his grandma. Marina is a daughter of the late Geraldine Marks who wrote the column, “Around the Kitchen Table.”

The Free Press WV


There have been lots of fairs and festivals going on in Gilmer and Braxton counties. Lots of reunions and family get togethers. People have gone on vacations and some have taken day trips. Right now, we are having fall like weather and it makes everything more tolerable to be outside. Farmers are in hay and gardens are flourishing. Housewives are canning and freezing food for the winter.  It’s a busy time of year.  We are still having the thunder storms nearly every week. I can remember when we were growing up that Mom and Dad made us kids go to bed during a storm. They thought the feather pillows would protect us from lightening. Aunt Bea Stewart Watson, said that my Grandfather, Frank Stewart, would put a feather pillow up over the phone on the wall. He was afraid of lightening running in on the phone. Another belief was that if you were out in a car, the rubber tires would protect you. Mom always got us quiet. Old folks believed that noise attracted lightening. Another belief was that you had to stay out of water, not only out of the creek, but also in the house. Don’t even have your hands in water.

Our son was always fascinated by a storm. We were on a camping trip, in a campground, up in northern Michigan one time and it came up a thunderstorm during the night. I woke up and checked on him. He wasn’t in his bed.  I opened the camper door and saw him sitting out on the picnic table in that rain, all excited and watching the sky. I yelled at him to get back inside the camper and asked him why he was out there in that storm. He said he just wanted to see what was going on.  We got him back to safety. He was probably about 8 or 9.  Some boys do not fear anything and he was one of them. I think he had guardian angels watching over him or he wouldn’t be here.  When we first moved back to the farm at Shock, we had a tin roof on our trailer and I always enjoyed the sound of rain hitting on the tin roof. I’ve heard a lot of people say that they like to hear that. That’s all for this week, folks.

Until next time, take care, stay safe from the storms and God bless.

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