Col. Stanley E. Stout
February 17, 2017
When a sudden heart attack took Col. Stanley E. Stout on April 30, 2006, a deafening silence fell over the entire livestock industry. “The Colonel,” as many called him, deeply affected all who heard his auctioneer’s chant or, better yet, heard him declare “sold” for one of their cattle.
Many would agree Stanley made the auction more exciting and interesting. He was a purebred livestock auctioneer, but he was more than that to so many in the cattle industry.
Stanley was raised on a Hereford ranch in Cottonwood Falls, Kan. He graduated from Kansas State University (K-State) and then went to Walter Britton Auctioneer School in Bryan, Texas. After finishing his education, he worked for the AHA showing and managing a Hereford herd in Japan.
After his return to the U.S., Stanley worked in the livestock publications industry as a field representative for Western Livestock Journal and then Drovers Journal before being promoted to head of field staff for Drovers. He later worked as director of advertising for the Charolais Banner. In 1975 he started Stanley E. Stout Auction Services.
Thus began more than 30 years of selling cattle with a joke and a smile. He was the premier auctioneer to have at a production sale and usually filled his calendar with between 140 and 180 sales per year. Keeping that schedule meant a lot of road time in his Cadillac.
He was more than an auctioneer — he was deeply involved in the industry. He worked to revitalize the American Royal Livestock Show. He served on the Board of Governors and worked the sale. Now the exhibitor of the supreme champion heifer at the Royal receives the Stanley Stout Memorial Scholarship.
“Stanley was one of those you never can replace,” says John Vanier, CK Ranch, Brookville, Kan. “He created a lot of enthusiasm for the Hereford breed. He made each auction he called more exciting and there was never a dull minute when he was behind the microphone. He spent his lifetime making people laugh. He was one of a kind and is greatly missed.”
At the time of his death, Stanley was a member of the AHA and a proud supporter of his alma mater, K-State, through the Ahearn Club and Block & Bridle. In honor of his life, K-State has begun a fund-raising effort to build a livestock-marketing center on campus. After the last K-State production sale Stanley conducted he mentioned the need for such a facility.
Stanley was also a member of the American Quarter Horse Association, National Auctioneers Association and Livestock Marketeers. He was a member of the board of directors of the American Royal and an active Chase County, Kan., 4-H alumnus.
His wife, Brenda; son, Justin Stout; three daughters, Jessie Stout, Jamie Felton and Jodie Brethour; six grandchildren; two stepsons and a stepdaughter, along with his friends in the livestock industry, continue to do as he would have wanted and celebrate his accomplishments in life.