Iowa 4-H Foundation

Posted on April 21, 2011 at 2:30 PM by Global Reach

Don and Marie LentsDon and Marie Lents’ association with 4-H began back in the late 1930’s when they were Adair County 4-H members. Don’s 4-H club was organized by the Fontanelle Superintendent of Schools.. Marie (Stephenson) Lents was in 4-H for a few years and then her family moved to Guthrie County.

This pair of 4-H alumnus was married on December 29, 1949. The Lents raised Hereford cattle and Berkshire hogs as well as corn and soybeans on their farm north of Fontanelle. They had lived on the farm until 2003 when they retired in Greenfield, Iowa.  Marie loved to garden and still does today.growing enough food for half the county.

Don and Marie’s four children, Ralph, Dale, Wayne, and Cathy became members of the Eureka Eagles in Adair County. Cathy was a member of the Prussia Merry Maids for the first 5 years of 4-H.  During this time frame, Don and Marie served as volunteer leaders for their children’s clubs. In addition, Marie served on the Adair County Extension Council. This was a busy time for them as they were very much involved in the county fair as well as attending the Iowa State Fair, Ak-Sar-Ben, and American Royal. All four children attended Iowa State University. Ralph, Dale, and Wayne received their Bachelor’s degrees in Animal Science. Cathy received her Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education.

The entire family gives back to the 4-H program in many ways.  During her college years, Cathy returned to Adair County to serve as a 4-H intern during the summer. Ralph, Wayne, and Dale have all volunteered as part of the 4-H program serving as club leaders, fair board members, volunteers, and judging team coaches.

Fair time is special for the Lents family. Over the years you could find Don and Marie at the Adair County, Guthrie County, and Madison County Fair supporting their grandchildren.  Marie assisted the Adair County Beef Superintendent on show days for more than 10 years. They have made many trips to the Iowa State Fair. In fact, Don and Marie worked at the Iowa State Fair for several years.

Today, Marie and Don stay active with their church, historical society, garden, and family.

4-H has been a legacy to this family and will hopefully continue with the great grandchildren. In fact, their daughter, Cathy, is the Executive Director for Poweshiek County Extension.  The Lents family has come full circle.

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Categories: Adair

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