Donations to Help SD Ranchers Hits $3 Million

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 PIERRE, S.D. (AP) – A fund aimed at helping western South Dakota ranchers who lost tens of thousands of cattle in an early October blizzard has collected $3 million, three times as much as had originally been expected. The South Dakota Stockgrowers Association, Cattlemen’s Association and Sheepgrowers Association set up the fund.  Stockgrowers Association President Bob Fortune says money was contributed by more than 5,000 donors from around the world. He says 394 applications for help have been processed so far, and additional relief will be given to ranchers after the Dec. 31 application deadline.  Joe Carley, of Philip, lost about 30 percent of his cattle and is grateful that so many people contributed to the relief fund.  At least 21,000 cattle, nearly 1,400 sheep and other livestock died in the storm.

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