Posted on August 28, 2017 at 9:33 AM by Emily Saveraid
Lonnie and his late wife, Billie Jean, have been strong supporters of the Taylor County 4H program for over 50 years. Billie Jean started her 4-H career as a member and belonged to the Platte Peppy Pals 4-H club. She later became a leader of that club as her three children joined 4-H. Lonnie taught the Tractor Safety course provided by the extension office for 15 years and was also a Boy Scout leader. Both were involved with the Extension Council and the fair board. Billie Jean was a member of the Iowa Sesquicentennial Committee for the county, raising funds to construct a new red barn at the fairgrounds. Lonnie was a member of the Advisory Committee for ISU Extension. In 1981, they were recognized as outstanding individuals in the 4-H program and presented with the Honorary 4-H Member recognition.
Working side by side at their family business, Barker Implement, they still found time to volunteer in the community. They were involved in the Lenox Chamber, the Lenox Stock and Saddle Club, the Lenox Rotary Club, the Tourism Committee, the Lenox Park and Pool Board & the Library Board, the American Legion Auxiliary, and the United Methodist Church. They especially enjoyed spreading cheer as Santa and Mrs. Claus during the community Christmas Carnival the 4Her’s hosted for over 15 years. They have been great supporters of all the Lenox school activities, rarely missing an opportunity to cheer on the team, applaud at the music program or laugh with others at school plays.
As their grandchildren joined 4H, they continued to encourage, teach, guide, and enjoy the activities of the fair. They could always be seen at the livestock shows, browsing the 4H buildings looking at the exhibits and supporting the youth at the annual livestock fair sale.
Taylor County would like to honor them for their community dedication, the encouragement to our youth and for keeping 4-H vision and family involvement a tradition.