Houston’s Sandy Garner Heads to Nationals in October

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HOUSTON, Miss. (WCBI) — A 15-year-old Houston girl earns a chance on a national stage this fall. For the rising sophomore, it’s the reward for years of hard work and dedication. And she’s learn some other life lessons along the way.

In February, Houston High School FFA member Sandy Garner won the dairy handler competition at the Dixie National Livestock Show. In October, she and her 3-year-old cow Latasha head to the FFA Nationals in Louisville, Ky. She attributes much of her success to her aunt, Gaye Booth.

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“My biggest role model would have to be my aunt because she’s always been there foe me. She has taught me not only about the cows, but life itself and how it can relate so much and just how to be a good person and do the right thing,” Garner said.

Sandy picked up her interest in livestock and competitions from her cousins.

“My cousins have always done it and I just always looked up to them. I just thought it would be just so much fun to do something like them so I tried and I just loved it,” she explained.
Interestingly, Sandy says while she might own a few cows for her children one day, her career interests aren’t really in farming fulltime.

“It’s too much work,” she laughed.

But she says the competitions have taught her a skill that should help in any field.

“I’ve learned leadership and how to put myself out there and to be more confident in what I do,” she said.

Garmer’s Agricultural teacher Karen Cook couldn’t be more proud of her.

“This is her first year in FFA and she really jumped in head first and has taken a lot of guidance of preparing for the competition. She was a little bit nervous, but took the judges suggestions and my suggestions and went out there and won,” the long-time educator stated.
Sandy is the oldest child of Miriam and Jesse Garner.