With the upcoming Orange County Livestock Show, organizers would like to pay tribute to a gentleman that passed away last month and has contributed so much to youth programs in  FFA and 4H clubs in Orange County.

Mr. Jay Daigle was a contributor and supporter of the agriculture and livestock community of Southeast Texas for many years, beginning with his participation in ag classes at Orange Stark High School in the late 1950s. He was a rodeo clown and participant during the 1960-70’s. Many people knew Mr. Jay as a rodeo announcer for many years as well.  During the 1970-80’s he was a stock contractor, focusing on helping youth and providing stock and producing Little Britches Rodeos throughout the Southeast Texas region.

Mr. Daigle retired from DuPont and established his own business, Bait-Tek, Inc. The business manufactures and sells a bait attractant for wild animals that is combined with a rabies vaccine and is used by state, national, and international agencies to help eradicate rabies. While this business was one of his passions, he always found time to focus on another of his passions, being an advocate for helping students and youth learn and participate in agricultural endeavors.

Throughout the last quarter century of his life, Mr. Daigle, along with his wife, Carol, made significant contributions to the agricultural community and youth participants in Orange County. He provided guidance and served on the Leadership Advisory Board and the Ag Committee for Texas Agri-Life Extension for over 20 years. His children raised cattle and showed steers through Orange County at the Southeast Texas State Fair. He contributed cattle to area youth to raise and show and often provided guidance to them in rearing the animals.

The walls of Mr. Daigle’s Bait-Tek office are a testimony to the contribution that he and Carol have made to the youth of Orange and surrounding areas.  The walls are lined with plaques and pictures of them standing with the students from whom they purchased animals at the Orange, Jefferson, and Newton County Youth Livestock Shows. He thought it very important that persons get involved and support these livestock sale auctions in order to reward youth for their hard work and to also keep a renewed focus on exposing students to the important world of agriculture. There are also plaques recognizing them for their support of area youth programs and conservation efforts. He believed that it all starts and ends with the land and what we make of it.

Today, his family continues to run the Bait-Tek business as well as the farm and ranch that Mr. Daigle started. They plan to continue his legacy of contributing to area agricultural endeavors. In honor of Mr. Jay, they will also continue to support the students and Orange County Youth Livestock Show and encourage everyone to join them and participate in the sale and other efforts to help keep an awareness of the importance of agriculture alive.

The Orange County Livestock Show will be held Oct. 18 and 19. Come out and support the exhibitors and their animal projects. The sale auction of the pigs, goats, lambs, rabbits and chickens will be at 7:00 p.m. on Oct. 19. Buyers will be served a delicious barbecue dinner cooked and donated by The Go Texan Committee of Orange County. All events will be held at the Pavilion/Barn on Arnel Road, adjacent to the Mauriceville Crawfish festival ground off Hwy 62.

Lester Daigle is pictured with Mathew Odom.