Carolyn Hoffmann allowed herself a smirk of victory as she won the top prizes.

Even illness couldn't stop Carolyn Hoffmann

"I worked so hard, all summer," said Carolyn Hoffmann of Minneota.

So despite being hooked up to IV's in Marshall and suffering severe stomach pain, she crawled out of her bed and went to the Lyon County Fair to compete

"Yesterday I could barely walk," said Hoffmann.

But she knew, if she didn't show her dairy cow at the fair, she wouldn't win a trip to the state fair.

So Carolyn Hoffmann left her respitory ailments behind, climbed into the ring and did what her father Dale Vershelde told her — "Just keep smiling."

Her brother Joe Verschelde was right there for moral support. "She has a real good ... a really good chance to win," he said.

And win Carolyn did.

She not only took the Grand Championship in the Overall Heifer Colored Breed category, but she also took home the Overall title for a clean sweep.

"Yesterday I didn't know if I'd make it, but I feel a lot better today," Hoffman said.

No doubt ... winning has a way of doing that.

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