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Clayton Melendy: Passion for People and Animals


Clayton Melendy has lived in Paso Robles his whole life, creating connections and coming to love the quiet valley town.  Before high school, Melendy was involved in 4H and became passionate about animals and agriculture. He has done FFA for all four years of high school and this year is the FFA secretary. Throughout high school, he has taken many agricultural classes including AG welding 1, 2, and 4, AG business, and Ag Economics, and has developed a love for working with his hands and animals. “AG is really fun because it was like hands-on and I got to learn things. It’s fun to work with animals and grow something cool,” Melendy said. 

Entering high school Melendy was afraid of judgment from peers but learned to overcome it by being involved in public speaking. He has done 2 Creed competitions his freshman year, an advanced team competition in Sophomore and Junior year, winning best treasurer Junior year, and Officer team and extemporaneous public speaking competitions in Senior year.

While FFA is seen as an expensive hobby there is a large revenue gathered when selling. The last calf that Melendy bought was $1,500, then he put $1,000 worth of feed and supplies. Spending around $2,500 the calf was sold for $5,000, doubling the money he put into it and using that money to buy a car and save for his future.

During the 2021 Mid State Fair, Melendy and a team of 10 people sold barbecue and donated the money to the James W. Beck’s Foundation, Legacy Foundation, and then they bought animals and gave all of the meat products to the local food bank and raised a total of $35,000. 

Similar to his love of animals Melendy has always had a passion for human connection and understanding. “I just like seeing like, true people like I don’t know, I don’t think like illogical things like all people are horrible, but I think that there’s always something good about somebody or like there’s there has a reason for their madness or something you know it’s a nice sentiment,” Melendy said. Mentor and teacher Justing Pickard has expressed a similar inquiry having said, “Clayton has one of the best personalities I have seen in a student. He is so friendly and genuine to everyone he encounters. His best attribute is his relationship building skills and he works so hard to make sure that everyone on a team or a group is staying focused, still having fun, and working towards the group goals.” As Clayton embarks on the unknown of the future he looks forward with hopes of meeting new people and growing in his passion for animals and people.


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