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Nonnewaug High School's Chief News Source

NHS Chief Advocate

Nonnewaug High School's Chief News Source

NHS Chief Advocate

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Butkievich Hoofing Out His Teenage Years

Evan+Butkievich+mimics+cleaning+a+toy+horses+hoof.+Butkievich+works+as+a+farrier.+%28Courtesy+of+Evan+Butkievich%29
Evan Butkievich mimics cleaning a toy horse’s hoof. Butkievich works as a farrier. (Courtesy of Evan Butkievich)

OXFORD — There’s a lot of aspects of other friends that might not be known or understood. Even adults may misinterpret a teen’s life and struggles. Evan Butkievich, a senior at Nonnewaug, went rolling into his teenage years not knowing that stress would cause problems.

“Being stupid and losing my license was a difficult one,” said Butkievich. “My past mistakes in life have set me back.”

Some may argue that making mistakes is just a part of being a teenager, but another part of becoming a teenager is getting a job and learning the worth of a dollar. This was a big part of Butkievich’s life early on when he started his first job on a farm, which is where he learned many tricks of the trade and a good work ethic. This is also where he learned quite a bit of his mechanical skills. 

“Working with very mechanically inclined people,” said Butkievich, “has changed how I view different projects and tasks.”

Butkievich’s mechanical skill was a big stepping stone for him because it opened him to many different opportunities. One opportunity that stuck out was becoming a farrier, a job that requires skill in trimming and shoeing horses’ hoofs.

Butkievich’s boss, Chuck Melius, is experienced and has been working with Butkievich for many years now. They share a tight but lighthearted relationship, as shown by one common comment made from boss to employee.

“You’re as useless as an ashtray on a motorcycle,” Melius says jokingly when talking to Butkievich.

“I believe Chuck has done well for him,” said Harrison Evans, a student at Platt Technical High School and Butkievich’s longtime friend. “As well as being a great working mentor for Evan, [Melius has been] teaching him mainly everything he knows about being a farrier.” 

Butkievich says that his occupation has helped set a productive path for himself.

“Even with all the mistakes that have set me back from everyone else, I still push every single day to learn more and more and to better my knowledge on the art of horseshoeing to keep up to date and well rounded at work,” Butkievich said.

People might expect Butkievich to be a hardworking, blue-collar teen, but what they might not expect is he is a great friend and willing to spend any of his free time aiding his peers.

“Evan is a very charismatic person willing to give a helping hand, no matter what he has going on,” said Evans.

Butkievich also surprises people when he says he plans to continue his education after high school.

“People wouldn’t expect to find out that I actually plan to go to school after high school,” said Butkievich. “I like learning new things.”

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About the Contributor
T.J. Butkus '24, Reporter
T.J. Butkus is a writer for the Chief Advocate. He lives on a farm in Bethlehem. As a first-year reporter, writing stories seemed interesting to him, which is what caused him to join.
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