In Memory of Dr. Christopher Raines

Published on: 06:40AM Dec 20, 2011

This week’s blog is dedicated to the memory of a dear friend of ours who passed away this past Sunday.

The College of Agricultural Sciences at Penn State is mourning the loss of a valued friend and colleague, Dr. Christopher Raines, who was killed in an automobile accident on Dec. 18th.

Raines, 29, was an assistant professor of meat science and technology in the Department of Dairy and Animal Science.

"Chris was a remarkably talented and hard-working individual with so much career promise," said Terry Etherton, head of Dairy and Animal Science. "His untimely loss is so tragic for his colleagues, friends and family -- we will miss him greatly."

Raines' academic interests included meat color chemistry; meat product display and packaging systems; consumer demand and trends for red meat products; sustainability and meat production; and meat safety.

As an extension meat specialist, he provided educational programs and information covering meat quality, safety and compliance topics for small meat processors.

As one of the college's pioneers in the use of social media as educational and communication tools, Raines had built a growing national reputation as an important voice in the agricultural community.

Through his Twitter feed (under the handle @ITweetMeat) he had sent more than 15,000 tweets that reached nearly 3,800 followers and countless other readers. He also offered a popular blog,, where he posted his experiences and thoughts about meat as food -- where it comes from, how it's produced, how people consume it and its health implications.

A native of Ohio, Raines joined the Penn State faculty in 2008 after earning his doctorate in food science from Kansas State University. He received his bachelor's degree in animal science from Oklahoma State University in 2004 and his master's degree in animal science from Kansas State in 2006.

Christmas gives us the opportunity to do things for people we might otherwise neglect, and we must take advantage of every opportunity.

December 25th isn’t about presents, and as our Pastor told us this past Sunday it isn’t even about family! It’s about the birth of Jesus Christ and his presence in our lives.  The angels had been overjoyed once before when the Son of God, through whom all things were created, laid the foundations of the earth (Job 38:1-7).  But now the same Son was coming to dwell upon the earth He created!  The joy only the angels had known would now be a joy spread throughout the earth to all people.   Have you experienced the peace of which the angels spoke?

Imagine how excited you’d be (or are), if your loved one were returning home after a tour of duty.  You would be (or are), giddy with excitement, straightening the house, planning a menu, calling friends, and preparing for the long-awaited reunion.  This is the same excitement we should be experiencing and preparing for in the coming week as we get ready for Christmas.  The Celebration of the birth of Jesus Christ.  Think of why he came, and what he did for us. 

This Christmas, remind yourself of why it is more blessed to give

than to receive.

And as this year is coming to an end, it’s a good time to leave behind some old habits. 

Perhaps you need to bring your temper under Christ’s control.  Or perhaps you need to change your vocabulary.  Maybe God is nudging us to forgive an offense or overlook an insult.

As we celebrate Christmas with friends and family, and prepare to end one year and begin a new one, let’s determine to start it with passion.  To press on with a desire to succeed in how we live our lives and how we choose to raise our cattle!


Celebrate Christmas this year with both a backward glance

and a forward look!  Rejoice!  God is with us!


Merry Christmas,

From all of us at:

The Kuhn Family Farm

& Old Country Store