Meet the Member: Grayce Baxter
Story by Riata Cummings Grayce Baxter is a rodeo athlete and senior at Lehi High School. She enjoys “all things medical” and is currently taking […]
story by Riata Cummings
Demi Hunter is a 17-year-old cowgirl from Spanish Fork, Utah. She is the daughter of Cheryl Shepherd and Chad Hunter, and has three siblings: Dallas, Dillon, and Danzi. She attends Spanish Fork High School, and the senior’s favorite classes are Equine Science and English. Demi used to play on a competitive soccer team but has since devoted all her time and effort to the sport of rodeo. After high school she plans to study finance and business at Utah Valley University. The barrel racer would like to continue competing and will test her skills by participating in various jackpots and rodeo associations.
Demi’s parents both participated in rodeo when they were younger, and she had a pony as a little girl, but it wasn’t until her sophomore year that she became a devout competitor. Her and her 15-year-old mare, Bugs, became a team in September of 2017. It took some time for the two of them to get together, but the dark bay has become a consistent and trustworthy partner for Demi. Working hard to maintain that partnership, Demi rides an average of four times a week.
Demi’s favorite rodeos include the Dixie 6, a three-weekend run in sunny southern Utah. The warm weather and beautiful rodeo grounds make for fun and memorable rodeos. Another memorable rodeo, Demi recently finished second in the average at the Intermountain Icebreaker, an invitational rodeo for junior high and high school students hosted in Ogden, Utah, early each spring. Aside from the competition, her favorite part of rodeo is the time she gets to spend with her friends. Despite being in direct competition, they are always supportive and good-natured.
Rodeo has taught Demi the value of patience in the face of a challenge. She has learned that you can’t expect success without effort, and that improvement takes time. She would advise rodeo rookies to be patient with themselves and their horses, and to take the time necessary to become successful. One of her greatest strengths is her ability to see the good in people and keep and open mind about others. Rodeo has helped her develop this strength by giving her the opportunity to meet lots of people, and by challenging her to withhold forming judgments based on the opinions of others.
Demi lives by the saying, “no rain, no flowers,” meaning that there are no good times without rough times. She knows that in order to appreciate the good things of life, we must experience adversity. Demi’s heroes are her parents. She looks up to their dedication and work ethic and is grateful for the time they sacrifice to help her pursue her dreams. She would like to thank them for giving her the means and the opportunity to compete in the sport she loves. Demi would also like to thank Laynee Giles and her family for their help and support the last few years.
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