$178,000 Is a Lot for a Pig, but This Pig Is Paying for College (New York Times)
Inevitably, the auctions turn out better for the animals’ owners than for the animals themselves. Three days after the auction, Kipper was put in a trailer and driven to a meat science laboratory at Texas A & M University, where he was slaughtered and placed in a cooler. Once his drug test results come in, Kipper will be butchered, boxed and, along with 66 other top-ranking barrows, donated to charity. The four couples who bought Kipper will each receive a 54-pound gourmet pork package.
The last time Mr. Leach saw Kipper was at the arena, in his pen on champions’ row the day of the auction. Some of the livestock show’s committees call the arena’s back loading dock, where exhibitors aged 8 to 18 say goodbye to their animals, the trail of tears. “It was one of the hardest things to do, to leave him in his pen,” Mr. Leach said, standing by the dirt and hay in Kipper’s empty stall back in Haskell. “I miss him. I really do. I miss just kind of knowing that he knows you’re there, and you know he’s there.”
This is the saddest thing I’ve ever read.