Auctioneer retiring after 3 decades in the booth

Auctioneer retiring after 3 decades in the booth

ASHBURN, GA (WALB) - An auctioneer in Turner County is stepping out of the booth after almost 35 years. Bill Halford has been selling cattle at Turner County Stockyard for 3 generations of the family business.

In talking with Halford and the stockyard owner, it's clear not only how much Halford means to the business, but how much it means to him.

Trailers with cattle, and trailers looking for cattle have been pulling into the Turner county stockyard for years. And for the last 32 of them they've been buying and selling to the tune of the same voice.

"He's been a tremendous asset to our business," said Allen Wiggins, owner of the Turner County Stock Yard.

That voice is auctioneer Bill Halford's, and they pack out this room buying cattle.

"Come 5 minutes to 1, you'll be looking for a place to find a seat," said Halford.

And he was right, but after more than 30 years, Halford says his time is up.

"Comes a times when you're 76 years young it's time to quit," said Halford

That doesn't make it any easier.

"I don't fish I don't hunt. This was my life," said Halford.

It's a way of life that's spanned most of his life. Many memories from years ago are still fresh, like one man who thought he was getting a good deal.

"When I told him it was 3 times that money, he passed out," said Halford.

It's not the cows, or the money, or the microphone that he'll miss though, it's the people filling up this room.

"It's a way of life for a lot of these good folks and it's a continuation for a lot of these folks," said Halford.

And those people will miss him.

"This is a family business and he's been a part of our family for 32 and a half years," said Wiggins.

They've found another auctioneer, but they know it will be tough to fill the seat that Bill Halford sat in for nearly 3 1/2 decades.

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