Happy 4th of July fireworks!
Our July Women of Wool feature is Waneta Fawcett. She jokes about how people who knew she didn't have a job outside of her home would say to her, "Of course, you don't work." Her normal response was, "You should follow me around sometimes." Waneta has been around sheep her whole life. As a girl she helped herd her dad's farm flock to the summer pasture and fed 'bum' lambs. All of her married life, including now, she has fed and cared for pet (bum) lambs. One year while she had a baby, a toddler, a preschooler, and five other children, she was bottle feeding 13 lambs three times a day. From the time she married, Waneta and her husband, Lorin, have spent part of each summer in the Wasatch National Forest where Lorin herded sheep and she tended camp. At first it was for a few weeks; later it was up to three months living in a camp trailer. They moved with the sheep, sometimes daily and sometimes every few days. Waneta's primary work is cooking all the meals. However, she helps with horses, driving trailers and sometimes herding sheep. One time when Lorin had gone to town for a meeting, their oldest son (then a young teenager) was trying to bed the sheep in a bad rain storm. Waneta left her younger children in the trailer, got on a horse, and helped him. When her children were babies and toddlers, she and Lorin would pack them into pack bags on the horses and go bed the sheep. Many times over the years she was Lorin's only helper. She has helped load sheep, helped dock, ran the cutting gate, suckled newborn lambs, fed sheep, poked sheep into the shearing plant and on trucks, etc. She still drives the truck when they trail sheep to and from the forest permit, along with feeding the 10 - 15 member trail crew three times a day. She has always helped and is now responsible for organizing food for the extended family (30 to 40 people) when they come to help in the corral during shearing, docking, trucking, haying, etc. Currently her main job is counting sheep coming down the chute, getting on trucks, etc. Waneta also works to promote the sheep industry. She helped all eight of her children (including the boys) to participate in the Make-it-Yourself with Wool contest. She organizes a Sheep and Wool afternoon for the local 4th grade once a year. She serves as a county Farm Bureau Secretary and frequently writes letters to her local politicians encouraging agriculture friendly policies. Having spent her whole life around sheep, she still likes them. She collects sheep figurines and toys.
Thank you Waneta for your commitment to the Utah Wool Growers Association.