Teenager's selfless when it comes to helping others

Brenda Riojas/The South Texan at TAMUK

For some, the Jim Wells County fair might mean carnival rides, funnel cakes and a rodeo. For one boy it’s a chance to show his hard work and dedication.

Tyler Swinyer-Stehle is a 15-year-old boy who’s showing a heifer at this year’s JWC livestock show.

For the last two years he’s been a participant of the JWC livestock show.

He started with pigs and chickens and decided to take on a cow this year.

This year’s JWC fair was held from Wednesday, Oct. 21, to Friday, Oct. 24, and viewers were able to watch virtually.

Although this year’s livestock show will be a bit different, it doesn’t stop him from chasing after his goal and winning the calf scramble and sweepstakes division.

In his division he went up against two other contestants.

“I want to help them, I want to make sure that they can do good, too," Swinyer-Stehle said. 

He knows that his competitors are just as eager to win, but it doesn’t stop him from helping them out whenever they need it. Swinyer-Stehle, who lives in the Orange Grove area, understands his willingness to help others might give them a boost, but wants for his competitors to feel just as confident and ready as he is.

When his friends call him for advice on their animals he will spend just as much time on their animal as he would for his own.

His cow, Vanilla, is 6 months old and is about 600 pounds.

“He halter broke her from day one and she’s been his big ole baby, his pride and joy," said Swinyer-Stehle’s mother, Jamie Stehle.

Swinyer-Stehle spends every single day tending to his cow, walking and taking care of her. The pandemic has allowed Swinyer-Stehle to do his schoolwork from home, also allowing him more time to spend with Vanilla.

In the long run, Swinyer-Stehle aspires to be a donor and give back to young children so they can experience caring for and showing an animal too.

“His work ethic is unmatched and is absolutely second to none," said Mark Alaniz, Swinyer-Stehle's donor and owner of Dulce Nea Cattle Company.

Alaniz has been a donor for the last two years and loves to watch the youth make emotional connections to the animals.

“He went to the ranch and picked animals that are not easy to break in,” Alaniz said. “He has a special way of breaking in the animals and getting them to do what he needs.”

Swinyer-Stehle’s special connection with the animals stands out to Alaniz. Alaniz also admires when a stock show participant shows as much dedication as a young man like Swinyer-Stehle does.

“He’s like a sponge when you’re talking to him. He listens the first time and once he knows what to do, he immediately wants to teach someone else how to do the same thing,” Alaniz said.

Swinyer-Stehle is quick to teach his younger siblings and competitors the skills required to tend for animals. He’s passionate about teaching others just as he is about animals. On Friday, Oct. 24 Tyler showed his cow Vanilla, which was viewed on cattleinmotion.com.

JWC Fair participant,Tyler Swinyer-Stehle, showing his cow, Vanilla.