Big Boar Honors Big Legacy, Funds Foundation

A team of Iowa State alumni and fans brought home the prize for the Biggest Boar at the Iowa State Fair in August. The purple ribbon wasn’t their true motivation. The crew honored their friend “Peabody” and raised money for his international charity.

Peabody, the Hampshire boar, was named for Brad Peyton (’79 farm operations) – an investment advisor and co-founder of the Shining City Foundation – who died last year following a battle with pancreatic cancer. Peabody was Peyton’s nickname when he was a member of the Alpha Gamma Rho fraternity at Iowa State.

Peabody, owned by Pleasant Hill’s Friends of Peabody, weighed in at 1,273 pounds. Co-owner Paul Kruse (’80 farm operations) says the team raised more than $8,000 by selling Peabody T-shirts to support the foundation’s work with orphanages, medical clinics, churches and other projects abroad.

“We have all been getting together the first day of the Iowa State Fair for the past six or seven years. Our group consists of John Sweeney (‘80 animal science, ‘84 DVM), Don Erickson (‘79 industrial education), Steve Duesenberg (‘79 industrial administration), Gerald Peterson (‘81 construction engineering), ISU supporters Joe Pritchard and Mark Whaley, Duke Reichardt – our token Hawkeye fan who’s married to ISU alum – myself and Brad’s wife Claudia (’80 ad design),” Kruse says.

Peabody was not the group’s first try at the state fair title of Big Boar. In 2012, Kruse teamed up with Peyton, Sweeney and others to raise “Fred Hoiboar,” named for Iowa State Men’s Basketball coach Fred Hoiberg. At 1,079 lbs., Hoiboar didn’t take home the gold, but his third place finish raised funds and awareness for Hoiberg’s cause of choice – Camp Odayin for kids with heart disease.

Lori Dvorak, a “future Iowa Stater” from Bondurant, cared for and showed Peabody with support from two of Peyton’s pledge brothers who also donated the T-shirts – Craig Rowles (’82 DVM), owner of Elite Pork Partnership in Carroll, and Tom Dittmer (’79 farm operations), owner of Grandview Farms in Eldridge.

“Our family has been humbled by all the kindness shown to us during Brad’s illness and after his passing. The contributions made to Shining City Foundation as a result of the Biggest Boar project will make a significant difference in the lives of many people around the world,” Claudia says. “Ultimately, this was not about Brad but about growing people in their Christian faith and helping others. For that Brad would be pleased.”

Founded to help care for abandoned children in China in 2001, the Shining City Foundation has grown to serve other geographic areas. In total, the Shining City Foundation has provided more than $500,000 to development initiatives abroad to enhance the health and welfare of underserved people.