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Cabrall, also a family friend, had another take on Rogers‘ wishes.

Roy always said, `When I’m dead, skin me and put me up on Trigger,’” she said. “It’s a famous quote. If he got his wish, he’d be up here for sale today.”

Rogers had Trigger preserved with taxidermy and mounted rearing on its hind legs in 1965. The presale estimate for the horse was $100,000 to $200,000.

Roy Jr. said it was difficult to put the collection up for auction, but he said Rogers had told the family to sell the museum collection if it stopped making money and became a burden.

“You’re smiling out of one side of the face and crying out of the other,” he said.

As for Trigger’s new owner, Campione says RFD-TV hopes to start its own Western museum and is looking to buy more Rogers items.

In the meantime, Trigger will be put to pasture at either the network’s office lobby or Gottsch’s house until final plans are made.

Other items auctioned Wednesday included Roy’s first guitar, which sold for $8,750, compared to an estimated high of $3,000; his first boots, which sold for $7,500, compared to an estimate of $4,000; and a charm bracelet that sold for $20,000, compared to an estimate of $9,000.

All sale prices include the buyer’s premium of 25 percent for most items, or 20 percent for prices in excess of $50,000.

The auction was to continue Thursday with more than 1,000 items, including the Rogers’ family dinner table, toy six-shooters, Rogers-themed tin lunchboxes and the Jeep “Nellybelle” from the Roy Rogers TV show.

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Online: http://www.royrogers.com