Talen Garcia

Lufkin Middle School eighth-grader Talen Garcia recently won first in his class for his red Angus prospect steer at the Texas State Fair in Dallas.

Lufkin Middle School eighth-grader Talen Garcia recently placed first in his class at the Texas State Fair in Dallas for his red Angus prospect steer.

“In the end, your hard work pays off,” Talen said.

Ca-Liga the steer gets fed morning and night with three specially blended supplements of protein and fat designed to promote muscle and fat growth. He also washes and carefully dries the steer’s hair before giving him a good comb.

“Mrs. Marshall, our ag teacher, helps us with a lot of it,” Talen said. “We know a bunch of people who use supplements, so we put it all together to get just what we need to get him to gain what he needs.”

Talen joined FFA in the third grade, taking after his brother. He started with a goat, and he said he never thought he would get to this point.

“I’ve learned a lot from the five years I’ve shown, and I keep learning more,” he said. “You never master it.”

This will be his last year to show in the junior showmanship category, and he said he knows it will be a lot tougher moving up. Talen said he would definitely recommend FFA to other students.

“I’ve learned a lot through FFA. Not just with animals but with respect and a lot of other stuff,” he said.

Grace Juarez’s email address is grace.juarez@lufkindailynews.com.