Latexo High School students loses show pig in fire

CROCKETT, TX (KTRE) - It's been nearly one week since a Latexo High School student lost her show pig, Duke, in a fire that also destroyed her family's barn, and now the 15-year-old is asking the community for financial help to rebuild the barn and replace the pig she lost.

Bailey Craddock says on the morning of April 6th, she got up and fed Duke just like she did every morning.

"We went down to our barn and we went to go feed the animals and everything was fine when we went down there," Craddock said.

After spending the afternoon with her mom, Craddock says she was shocked when she saw smoke coming from their barn.

"We proceeded to go down a driveway and we live on a really long driveway and we saw all this smoke and there was no barn," said Craddock.

And trapped inside the remains of the charred barn, right outside of his pen, was Duke.

"I felt bad. All I could hear was like in my head; I just heard him screaming, you know? Wanting him to be safe, wanting me to come and get him and I wasn't there to watch out for him. I felt bad," Craddock said.

She had just gotten Duke in August of 2012 and had been working hard every day after school to train him for the upcoming 4-H competition at the Houston County Livestock Show and Rodeo.

"It really bothered me that I wasn't there. But the firefighters even said if we were there we probably would've gotten hurt trying to save something else," said Craddock.

Volunteer firefighters from Porter Springs and Crockett were able to extinguish the fire, but were unable to determine the cause.

Craddock says the loss of Duke was hard because he died six months after she lost her father.

"I finally felt like everything had settled down, everything was getting back to normal and now this happened," said Craddock.

But she says no matter what happens she is trying to hold her head up high.

"As close as you do get to those show pigs, you are raising them to sell them so I mean you can only get so attached knowing that you have to get rid of them. I'm sure if I open up my heart and my mind, I'll be able to get close to another pig and have a good experience with it," said Craddock.

Donations can be sent to Lynda at (936) 544-2238.

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