My friend Lori Campbell is a tiny little thing, on a good day and wearing her highest heeled cowboy boots she may hit 5’2”. Although small in stature she is larger than life, full of energy and can out work any man twice her size. I don’t recall when or where I first met Lori, probably a bull sale or some sort of cattle producer meeting, but I do remember she had a quiet, yet strong presence about her along with a smile that lit up her whole face. Over the past several years I have got to know her better and my first impression wasn’t wrong.
Lori, the middle child and only daughter, of Bill and Joyce Majors, grew up on a cattle ranch in Nebraska. When Lori was a senior in High School, the Major’s realized with Lori’s oldest brother already gone from the ranch and Lori and her younger brother not too far behind him, they would soon be losing all their free help on the ranch. Knowing they could not afford to hire extra help when all their children had left, Bill and Joyce decided they needed to downsize their operation.
After making their decision Bill and Joyce packed their bags, left their two youngest children in charge of the ranch and headed out for a two week trip to look at ranches south of Nebraska and North of the Mississippi! The couple ended up buying a horse ranch in Elk City, OK. It was on this ranch that Lori really found her calling, riding and training horses. In addition to riding and training horses, Lori took up riding saddle bronc horses and competing in the (WRCA) Working Ranch Cowboys Association.
A short while after moving to Elk City, Lori traveled to Reydon, OK, a small town not far from Elk City, to help a friend fit a steer for a cattle show. Maybe by chance or maybe through God’s ultimate plan a 6’4” Cowboy by the name of Jeremiah Campbell was also in Reydon for a bronc riding school. Later that evening both Lori and Jeremiah attended a fireman’s dance. The Cowboy caught Lori’s attention and she started asking around about him and learned his name. Fearless as always, Lori walked up to the Cowboy, and said “I hear you are Jeremiah Campbell and I bet you would like to dance with me!”, and of course he did! Lori told her friend that same night that she was going to marry that guy.
For the next several years after their first dance, Lori and Jeremiah took separate paths. They went to different colleges, made separate career choices but still kept in touch through it all. Flash forward to the present. Lori and Jeremiah have three boys, Jake 17, John 12 and Josh 10 and have worked for close to twelve years for the Davis and Sons Cattle Company in Ellis County, OK. The Campbell’s take care of the ranches cow/calf operation and keep their own stockers and yearling cattle, often retaining ownership of the cattle all the way through the feed yard. In addition to working on the ranch, raising three boys and wife to Jeremiah, Lori is the Western Field Representative for the Oklahoma Cattlemens Association.
Now that you have all learned about my friend Lori, I am fairly sure all of you are wondering about the title to this story, “I don’t need watch or own sweatpants!” A while back scrolling through Facebook, I came across a video Lori had posted. Occasionally Lori will post a short video. The videos are usually inspirational and include “real life” scenarios, both good and bad but completely honest. Throw in a little comic and Lori’s smiling face and you have yourself as we like to say in western OK, “some good watching!”
Read more about Lori in the December 2020 issue of Oklahoma Farm & Ranch.