For 15 years, Shawano County Fair time was Melissa time.
Melissa Jo Szucs, a teenager from the town of Richmond, was a lifelong 4-H’er who cherished the county fair so much that she could barely bring herself to leave on closing day.
“Just one more lap?” she would ask, urging her parents to circle the fairgrounds one last time before heading for the exit.
For those who knew Melissa, it is hard to imagine that the county fair will go on without her this year. The little girl with the big smile succumbed to cancer June 18 at age 15.
Family and friends are making sure that Melissa is remembered when the fairgrounds, starting Wednesday, are filled with the excitement, fellowship and traditions that she treasured.
“She really believed that the fair should be every day of the year,” said her mother, Vicky Szucs. “It is kind of like home, and everybody comes home for a few days.”