Nov. 2014: Nebraska farmers help an ailing neighbor
As this video shows, thirty -five farm neighbors, relatives, and friends came together to help harvest a corn crop when the farmer could not finish on his own.
It’s What Farmers Do (from an archived blog)
Mark Brown of Anita, Iowa, worked his final harvest on October 14, 2010. Rescuers found him dead under his burning combine. He apparently was trying to unhitch part of the equipment to save some of the machinery from the fire. Brown had sailed around the world in U.S. navy submarines, but he settled on the land, and he became passionate about his family, his faith, and his farm. He also became a statistic in the ledgers of farm dangers.
Good neighbors bake pies for funerals, deliver sweet corn in the summer, and help roundup cattle that have gone walkabout. The community barn-raising days are mostly gone, but Dad’s letters contained anecdotes about the sharing that occurs in agricultural circles. “Larry and his family lost their house and belongings in a fire but some neighbors let them use the house and all its furnishings while they’re away in Arizona.” Dad pointed out that the ones giving usually got greater rewards from doing the deeds than the recipients did.
Being neighborly is not peculiar to Iowa. No doubt, rural folks around the world have ways of bonding together and helping each other out. Agriculture is a dangerous profession, but for many, it is more of a “family” than a profession. A few days after her husband’s death, Nancy Brown looked out her kitchen window at four combines harvesting corn and said, “It’s what farmers always do.” Dan Gogerty (photo from kearneyhub.com)
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