A crowning achievement
The audience at the Washington County Fair Queen Contest Sunday night cheerfully sang “Happy Birthday” to Marie Hora, led by Aly Olson, Miss Iowa. Hora was 99 years old July 10.
Before singing, Miss Iowa asked Marie how many years Marie has been going to the Washington County Fair. She couldn’t come up with an answer, but The Journal archives hold a partial answer. In a story dated July 16, 2012, Marie said that she joined 4-H when she was 11 years old. She learned cooking, canning, sewing and meal planning at 4-H events.
The story also says that Marie’s daughter, Kathy Ebert, joined 4-H when she was 14 years old. Marie became a 4-H club leader the same year. Marie became active in the 4-H photography project area in 1967. She was the photography superintendent for over 20 years. Daughter Kathy, and granddaughter Jodi Ebert have also been involved in 4-H photography for several years.
Marie was honored as an inductee into the Iowa 4-H Hall of Fame in 2008. News about that event states that Marie helped start the Iowa Maidens 4-H Club in Washington County and was a leader for several years.
The Iowa State Fair recognized Marie for her years in 4-H, with a special plaque on her 95th birthday.
She has left her legacy in the care of her children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Great-granddaughter Madeline Hora was the 2013 Washington County Fair Queen. Madeline crowned her younger sister, Kaitlin, as the 2014 Washington County Fair Queen, Sunday night.
While she may not have been involved in 4-H every year, her entry into 4-H began 88 years ago. No one else in the audience Sunday matched that achievement. It was a crowning achievement for the Hora family.