CLAY COUNTY (KFDX/KJTL) — Students at Midway ISD in Clay County were in the middle of reading “Lonesome Dove” when famed Texoma author larry McMurtry passed away in March.
His passing affected them so much they wondered what they could do to pay tribute to a fellow Texan they admired so much.
Sophomore English teacher Lori Welch says that her students were determined to organize an event that Larry McMurtry would have been proud of.
“They said we want to do a cattle drive. So this is all them. They designed the project. They did all the work,” Welch said.
From an early morning cattle drive to lasso and cornhole competition to a hot dog eating contest, Midway school principal daniel Hutchins says the Larry McMurtry Cattle Drive and Student Showcase is something his students will remember all their lives.
“This project started with reading a novel and now turns into a project that involves the entire school and goes across multiple learning styles and across the different curriculum so we get to experience what we learn,” Hutchins said.
That’s because at a cattle drive, everyone chips in.
“It’s nice to see everyone involved. This is one of those events where we don’t just have our school, our students, our staff. We have people from neighboring communities coming out,” Hutchins said.
Reasons Welch says is why “Lonesome Dove” is more than just an entertaining story.
“I think what we’ve done here is make books about what they actually do and about their own history and that’s why it’s so important. I know they learned things why they were doing this,” Welch said.
It’s a way of life.