For most FFA and 4-H livestock kids, they look forward to the Stephens County Livestock Show because they get out of school for a week and get to do something they enjoy.
Kade and Cody Bowen, brothers from Velma, had even more reasons to be excited about the show.
During the past several months, Kade has been recovering from a dirt bike accident that occurred in October 2012. This left him with a shoulder injury, broken ribs and had him needing to be mediflighted to Oklahoma City for a traumatic brain injury. He then spent several weeks at Bethany Children’s Center for rehab.
“We didn’t know if he would be able to be back for (the livestock show),” said Kristy Bowen, Kade’s mother. “But he appears to have no long-term effects, it’s really a miracle.”
Kade, who is a seventh grader at Velma-Alma, has shown steers and heifers for a few years and it is his first grade little brother, Cody’s first year to show. When Kade finally received notice he could participate in the county show, it was hard for him to believe at first.
“I was surprised,” he said. “I’m thankful to be able to be here.”
Together, the brothers have three heifers and two steers and their mom said stock shows have been a family thing for a long time. She’s proud to see the responsibility it has taught her boys as well as how it brings the two even closer than they already are.
“Cody has learned everything from his big brother and wants to be just like him,” said Kristy. “He really looks up to him.”
While Kade is grateful to be able to show his animals, he is just as happy to get to be there for his little brother. Despite not getting to participate in the cattle fitting contest to be on the safe side, Kade was able to watch Cody make the first team for cattle fitting.
“I love being in his life and getting to watch him grow,” said Kade. “I like teaching him how to do things right.”
Cody without a doubt holds his brother in high esteem and genuinely enjoys having him there to show him the ropes out at the show barns.
“I like getting to do things with him,” he said. “He’s fun to do things with.”