BV Mavericks leader Katy Holditch with Mrs. Moody, wife of Robert Moody, and her son Bill

Katy Holditch, 9 years old, seen with lamb "Shirley Temple" at Yuma County Fair

Katy Holditch, 17 years old, at show with pig "Brooke Shields" during her last year of 4-H

The 4-H Circle
by Anna Tesch

 As a young 4-H member, imagine what it would be like to fast-forward into your life to a point where you are now a club leader and you have the rare opportunity to celebrate your 4-H experience with close family members of your late leader?  Buena Vista Mavericks 4-H Leader Katy Holditch recently enjoyed this adventure as she joined members of her leader's family at the Big MAC Farm in Maricopa on October 12th, 2013 to help celebrate 100 years of 4-H in Arizona!  The following is an interview with Mrs. Holditch as she shares her 4-H memories and the experience of coming "full-circle" in her 4-H life.  

BV News reporter:  We understand that you experienced a once-in-a-lifetime moment when you re-united with your 4-H leader's family at the Centennial Celebration. Can you tell us the circumstances under which you met these influential people? 

Katy:  I was able to reunite with my 4-H Leader's wife Elizabeth Moody (95 years) and her son, Bill. Sadly, my 4-H Leader, Bob Moody, passed away some years ago. Mrs. Moody knew me and was at many of our 4-H lamb meetings held at a farm home.  Mrs. Moody also was a 4-H Leader for cooking and sewing which I did not partake in.  I was interested in the animals.  Bill, her son reached out to me on Facebook to find out if I was going to be at the Centennial because he wanted his mom to reunite with me.  I told him I was attending the Centennial celebration and mentioned that he should show his mom our Mavericks website so she could see all the wonderful things we were doing and to take pride in knowing her husband inspired me to become a 4-H Leader.  In essence, it is his legacy.

BV News reporter: Where were you living when you were you in 4-H, how long were you a member, and what club activities did you participate in? 

Katy:  I was in 4-H from the age of nine to the age of eighteen. There are some organizations that you grow out of, but 4-H is one you grow into.  I started in the club that the Moodys' started called, Hi-Award in Yuma, Arizona.  I was in the club for six years raising lambs before I switched to a new club called the Gadsden Gang to raise pigs.  Hi Award did not offer swine as a project.  I participated in the Yuma County Fair, which was fun because it was during spring break, we met so many other kids there, and all of us went on rides together. In my teen years,  I had a romance at the county fair where I met a boy and we dated there, just like in Charlotte's Web.  It was sweet. I also was a 4-H camp counselor in my teens and was responsible for teaching camp songs.   I still enjoy 4-H friendships with so many kids, now adults, who I met along the way.

BV News reporter:  How did your leader influence you then and now? What is your strongest memory with Bob?

Katy:  Mr. Moody was a very community oriented, soft spoken, approachable man. He was also the Yuma County Extension agent for many years.  He served on the school board and his family attended our church.  He currently has a demonstration garden in Yuma dedicated to his memory.    I am now gardening myself!

Because he was kind and patient with us kids, we felt comfortable to ask questions, learn about raising animals, and prepare for the county fair.  His home was located on the canal banks in the Yuma Valley. Even then It was still very rural.  One year a pack of wild dogs came into the lamb pens and attacked several of the members' lambs.  Two were killed and one was scared and left without an ear.  It was a horrible sight and event. My dad was a veterinarian at the time and he was called to attend to the wounded.  As a kid, I used to go on calls with him.  Mr. Moody was there to console the kids who lost their lambs and bring the club to learn about the importance of neutering pets and not allowing them to  run and turn wild.  He was concerned that the dogs might attack people.  So the county was notified and a hunt for the dogs was pursued.  I never knew what became of the dogs, but I always remembered the concern and the manner with which he attended to the kids and parents.  That year I named my lamb "Moody".  He was my favorite lamb of all my years.

BV News reporter . In a simple phrase or sentence, how would you best describe your feelings at the moment when you reconnected with your 4-H leader's family?

Katy:  Nostalgia and pride to have known him.

BV News reporter:  Thank you, Mrs. Holditch, for sharing your story to help all 4-H members and supporters appreciate and understand the many benefits of being in 4-H and the wonderful memories that one makes that last a life-time.  I hope we all have the opportunity to complete the circle as you have!  We encourage you to visit the website to learn more about Katy's awesome leader, Bob Moody.

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