Harold V. Perrin
Harold V. Perrin

June 2, 1923 - March 9, 2003

Harold V. Perrin was born on June 2, 1923 to Vergil and Velma Lewis Perrin in Hyannis in the house now owned by Bernard and Ann Hayward. His grandparents, Henry and Alice Perrin, were pioneers who homesteaded in Cherry County on land currently owned by Henderson Land and Cattle Company. He had an older sister, Lila Perrin Bryant and a younger sister, Shirley Perrin Wernke. Their mother passed away when Harold was 13 and Vergil remarried and had two more children, Edith and Henry (Hank). Harold attended and graduated from the high school in Curtis, Nebraska and joined the Navy in June of 1946. He was honorably discharged in July 1947. Harold married Martha (Bobbie) Mallory on May 9, 1948 in Ashby, Nebraska, in the living quarters of the old drug store that the Mallory’s owned and operated. They raised three daughters, Ronda, Jackie and Lynn, on ranches throughout the Sandhills. Harold and Bobbie worked for Monahan Cattle Company, Pete and Felix Becker, Moon Lake Cattle Company, Tony Zeiger and Ted McDermand at the Pullman Cattle Company. In 1987, Harold and Bobbie retired and moved into their own home in Hyannis. Harold continued to do some day work, but health issues kept him from being as active as he would have liked. For several years, he set up a leather business in their small basement, making small repairs on saddles and tack and oiling saddles. He loved visiting with old friends when they brought their saddles to him for a “tune-up.” Harold passed away on March 9, 2003, after many years of battling ill health, leaving his wife, three daughters, one son-in-law, four grandchildren, and many goods friends to mourn his death.

Harold was a man who contributed hard work, talent and pure stubbornness to anything he embraced. The ranch that paid his wages always got their money’s worth. He was honest to a fault, always responsible and took tremendous pride in what he did. He loved to work and was raised on ranches around the Hyannis area and other than time living in Canada as a young boy and the year and two weeks he spent in the Navy, was a life-long resident of the Nebraska Sandhills. The work ethic that he had was beyond reproach because he was a perfectionist in everything he did. When working with or for him, you soon discovered he was a hard taskmaster. He was a cattleman who remembered his cattle and he was a horseman all of his life. He didn’t buy his heeling horses; he trained the ones he raised.

Harold was able to put together a small herd of Angus cattle plus his own little horse herd. He liked riding a colt each year during calving season. In his younger days, he was very adept at working teams. Upon his retirement, his old heeling horse, “Smoker,” ended up in North Carolina with a woman who worked with 4-H and special needs children. The horse was involved in Special Olympics, including the Special Olympics World Games, and used for riding lessons for riders of all ages and abilities. He was subsequently given the “Cosequin Equine Exemplary Award” under his new name “Calvin” and lived to be over thirty. Harold was so proud of that horse and kept in touch with the woman who owned him to stay updated on Smoker/Calvin.

Harold Perrin started with nothing and built a good life with his wife of almost 55 years. They worked at numerous ranches and always managed them as if they were their own. He was extremely organized and highly respected by neighbors, friends, bosses and business associates.
Harold was instrumental in organizing the Round Lake Ropers, the well-known roping club at the Carver Ranch north of Whitman. He served in every capacity in the organization, including President many times. Harold volunteered for years at the Grant County Fairgrounds as chute opener for the different rodeos, whether it was the Grant County Fair, Old Timer’s Rodeo or the High School Rodeo. He also competed in the first Old Timer’s Rodeo held in Hyannis and continued roping with Stan Huffman at many other “Old Timer’s Rodeos” in a three state area.

Harold moved cattle over much of western Nebraska. While working for Pete and Felix Becker, he took numerous trips with cattle from north of Ashby about 12 miles across country to north of Whitman. This would take two to three days and it was complete with a chuck wagon and many, many “trail stories.” In later years, he moved cattle from the Pullman Ranch, thirty miles north of Whitman across country to the Hanna Ranch north of Seneca.

Harold was creative and inventive, always going to the shop to “make something” that would serve a need. Harold was a member of the American Legion Post #57 in Hyannis, a charter member of the Round Lake Ropers, and a charter member of the National Bit, Spur and Saddle Collectors Association. He was inducted into their Hall of Fame in June 2002 in Loveland, Colorado.

A family member stated, “Harrold V. Perrin did an extraordinary job of living an average Sandhiller’s life.”

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