The Perry Future Farmers of America (FFA) were devastated when a fire that destroyed their barn last weekend killed 55 of their show pigs, but they should receive replacements for every pig, according to Keaton Walker of the Georgia National Fairgrounds.
Losing the pigs "was the hardest moment of my ten-year teaching career," said Ashley Denton, a Perry High agriculture teacher.
Walker said the FFA community is very close-knit and people from around the country have reached out to try to help. People have offered labor and parts to help rebuild the barn, part of a "tremendous" effort which includes the offer to replace the lost swine.
The outreach "makes you step back and think there's still a whole lot of good in this world," said Denton.
Walker said that show pig breeders will keep some pigs back every year as replacement pigs in case of fires like last week's in Perry, which happen more often in the Western and Midwestern United States.
Walker said they are expecting a full replacement of 55 pigs and that Perry FFA members will be able to get the pigs Monday after school.
Walker said the amount of people reaching out to help the FFA in their time of need has been "such a blessing."
Walker added that the pigs will be kept at the Georgia National Fairgrounds until Monday afternoon.