Shepherd’s Gate LaManchas
Sarah B’s Alpines
"I am the gate; whoever enters through me will be saved. They will come in and go out, and find pasture." John 10:9

A Tribute to Sarah

If I wanted to go outside and find my daughter Sarah, all I had to do was look towards the goat pen. Sarah loved her goats and would spend time with them everyday whether it was chore time or just play time. There would be days when I could go outside and hear singing coming from the goat yard. Yes, it was Sarah singing to the goats. Singing, playing with the kids, milking, and showing were all activities Sarah loved to do.

Our family enjoys raising dairy goats together and all of the many things that come along with that. Sarah played an important part in milking our herd twice a day, feeding, and taking care of all the daily chores that come along with raising goats. Of course, barn cleaning was far from her favorite, but reluctantly, she would help with that, too.

We make goat milk soap from our abundant milk supply and market it and Sarah would like to help with the process of making and wrapping the soap when it came time. Cheese making is another of our ventures and Sarah would always be right there learning how to make the cheese and trying her hand at the all too difficult task of making mozzarella cheese.

We started with dairy goats around 1991. When Sarah won a LaMancha doe at a show, that got us started in our LaMancha herd. We learned to love LaManchas and started to specialize in that breed. This was fine with Sarah until one day we ran into an offer we couldn't refuse on a couple of Alpine does. Sarah claimed one of the Alpines as her soon to be favorite goat, and made it clear that she wanted Alpines and desired to start her own herd of Alpine goats. I guess that it was the beginning of establishing independence for Sarah.

Sarah loved horses too, but they were too big and hard to handle. She had one but could not get it to do the things she wanted. She just wanted to get on and ride, but it was never that easy. The goats were not as hard for her to handle and she could do whatever she wanted with them at any time.

The only thing Sarah loved more than her animals was her Lord. Sarah had the faith of a child that Jesus teaches about in the Bible. She loved Jesus and desired to follow Him in all her ways. This always came out when we would go to dairy goat shows. She would always share with her friends the importance of a relationship with Jesus. Then she would wonder why no one would want to listen to her. I pray that someone has! She also kept an interest in missionaries and their work too.

On November 22nd , 1999 early in the afternoon, she was out in our pasture with her sister and friend, near the goats. It had just started to cloud up with the possibility of a fall shower. They had felt a few sprinkles of rain and decided it was time to come back to the house. On their way back to the house, close to the horse pen, lightning struck, hitting Sarah directly and killing her instantly; one moment, she was walking with her sister and friend among the goats doing the things she loved. The next moment, she was walking with Jesus exploring the wonderful gift of heaven. I'm glad she knew the way.

That had to be the worst day of our lives. After all these years, it still seems impossible to believe this has happened. But it has taught us to cherish every moment we have with our children because we never know how long we will have with them. It has been difficult going to goat shows without her. It seems like something is missing, but rather, it is someone.

Sarah is still an important part of our family and will always be. She had her desire to start that Alpine dairy herd and through the gifts of other goat lovers, that herd has now become a reality. “Sarah B's Alpines” was created in memory of our daughter and we will continue to raise and show that herd for Sarah. All proceeds raised from Sarah B's Alpines will be donated to missionary work, as Sarah would have wanted it.

We miss Sarah greatly here and I know that many of her friends in the goat world do too. When you go to goat shows and see Sarah B's Alpines, remember that a part of Sarah is there with us.