Fair 2021: Honoring the bright spirit of Sharon Heisler

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The Madison County Senior Fair Board will pay tribute to Sharon Heisler, who served as the fair veterinarian, on July 16 during the Livestock 101 show. Heisler passed away on May 1. She is shown here with her family: (from left) Andrew, Sharon, Ainsley, Ellie, Will, and Brad.

(Posted July 13, 2021)

By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor

The Madison County Senior Fair Board will honor Sharon Heisler’s bright spirit and contributions to the fair during the Livestock 101 competition on July 16. Sharon, who served as the fair veterinarian and was a big supporter of 4-H, passed away on May 1 following a battle with breast cancer.

“Sharon was a great asset to the fair,” said Dave Monnin, fair board vice president. “She was very compassionate, and her heart was in the 4-H system pretty hot and heavy. She will be sadly missed.”

Agriculture and 4-H were a major part of Sharon’s life from the get-go. Growing up on a farm in Willard, Ohio, she showed dairy cows and beef cattle and loved every minute of it. She passed along that passion to her children, all of whom got involved with 4-H as soon as they were eligible.

Ainsley, 8, who will be a third-grader at Plain City Elementary this fall, is enrolled in the Cloverbud program and will participate in the new Livestock 101 competition. Andrew, 15, will be a sophomore at Jonathan Alder High School and shows dairy projects. Ellie and Will, both 18, will be seniors this fall. Ellie is taking a pet project to the fair and is a member of the Junior Fair Board. Will, who has been active in 4-H for many years, is taking this year off to focus on football.

All four kids are members of the Beginners to Winners 4-H Club. While Sharon wasn’t an advisor for the club, she was very supportive of all of the club’s members.

“Sharon was always cheering on all of the youth and helping them with techniques or understanding of something on their specie which would lead to many life lesson discussions,” said Deetra Cunningham, club advisor. “Our club was blessed to have her, the wisdom she shared, and her great sense of humor. While we mourn her loss and pray for her loved ones, we will treasure the memories we do have.”

To pay tribute to Sharon, the club incorporated pink and white annuals into their flowerbed located at the flagpoles on the fairgrounds. They also plan to plant a Buckeye tree on the grounds in her honor.

“Sharon absolutely loved the fair, especially the people,” said Brad Heisler, her husband. “She was a talkative person. I think she liked catching up with everyone from year to year. She would be gone for hours just talking to people.”

When she wasn’t watching her children show or catching up with friends, Sharon was fulfilling her duties as the fair veterinarian, a volunteer position she held for approximately four years. She brought plenty of expertise and experience to the role.

Sharon graduated from The Ohio State University’s College of Veterinary Medicine in 2003, then worked for various practices, including London Animal Hospital and the Westside Animal Clinic. For the last several years, she ran veterinary clinics at the Heritage Country Store in Mechanicsburg and Heritage Cooperative in Delaware.

Brad said he is appreciative of the outpouring of love his family has received since Sharon’s passing.

“The amount of support we’ve gotten has been unreal–from Plain City, from Willard, from the different clients she had, and from the fair.”

The 2021 Madison County Fair runs through July 17. For a full schedule of events, visit Madison County Fair.

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