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Voice of the State Fair / Nick Ehrhardt

Voice of the State Fair

N. Keith Bradley (photo via N. Keith Bradley, an auctioneer, announcer, and real estate broker whose supple voice brought crowds to their feet and inspired bidders at farms, country clubs, and county fairs, died July 20 at age 79, according to the news obituary written by Toledo Blade reporter Mark Zaborney.

Bradley was an announcer at the Wood County (Ohio) Fair since 1958 and presided at livestock and other auctions there, Zaborney wrote. For 19 years, fair-goers voted him the county's favorite auctioneer. He was the top auctioneer in 1982 at the Ohio State Fair.

He was the announcer of the annual National Tractor Pulling Championships in Bowling Green (Ohio) since the first event in 1967. His cry, "Full pull!" was often imitated but never duplicated, said Terry Andryc, media coordinator for the championships.

"That was one of the things that fans looked forward to," Mr. Andryc said. "He was a tractor-pull fan and a member, and those words came from the heart." He had a stroke during the 2011 event.

Bradley also announced horse shows throughout the United States for more than 50 years, was in the halls of fame of the Reining Horse Association and the All American Quarter Horse Congress and was a past president of the Northwest Ohio Harness Horse Association, according to Zaborney.

He conducted auctions of all sorts and worked the crowd with the skills of a band leader, his staccato voice urging the bids higher and higher before descending with a final note on the willing buyer, the obit said.

Condolences may be posted on Bradley’s Guest Book.

This post was contributed by Alana Baranick, a freelance obituary writer. She is the director of the Society of Professional Obituary Writers and chief author of Life on the Death Beat: A Handbook for Obituary Writers.