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Our Impact

2020 Weekly Highlights

November 6, 2020 - Finishing Strong

It's not very often we find ourselves in the midst of a November heat wave, but that's exactly what we experienced this week. Our volunteers enjoyed several days of 60-70 degree weather as they worked to wrap-up our final assistance case of the year. They're continuing their efforts near Chelsea, SD to assist a farmer recovering from major head trauma after an ATV accident. The warmer weather has made for some great progress this week and barring any major setbacks, they should cross the finish line over the weekend. We are so thankful to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field for bringing in this important corn crop for another family in need:  Alan Bryce, Will Rudolphi, Vane Clayton and Andy Jewett!

To say that 2020 was an interesting year would be an understatement. It was an uphill battle from the start, with constant updates to the COVID outlook and regulations surrounding it. Initially, we relied very heavily on local volunteers to carry us through the planting season, but eventually, many of our out-of-state Farm Rescuers were able to make the journey and we are truly thankful to each and every person who chose to serve our mission this year. Despite the challenges, Farm Rescue was honored to reach an important milestone in our history by assisting our 700th farm family. This mark would never have been possible without our tremendous family of supporters - including our volunteers, sponsors, individual donors and those who helped spread word of our efforts. It's tough to say what 2021 has in store, but with such an amazing group of folks behind us who truly believe in this mission, we are poised and ready to extend a helping hand to many more rural families in need.

God bless you all!

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


October 30, 2020 - Snow Pain, No Gain (Plus a BIG Announcement!)

Weather delays have made for a pretty drawn-out ending to our 2020 harvest assistance efforts. Our final corn case near Chelsea, SD is still in progress, but a blanket of snowfall last week meant pressing the pause button on their remaining acres. Our volunteers have been assisting this family operation, as the husband continues his recovery from severe head trauma suffered in an ATV accident back in July. After his initial stay in a Sioux Falls hospital, he was moved to a skilled nursing facility in Lincoln, NE. Recently, he made the move to his daughter's home in Minnesota for the remainder of his rehab. This husband and wife duo typically runs the operation alone, with a small amount of hired help during harvest. Sadly, they have been away from home since mid-summer and Farm Rescue volunteers have been honored to assist with their corn harvest. Drier weather allowed them to resume operations yesterday and they hope to make some great progress this weekend before parking our equipment for the winter. Special thanks to our recent Farm Rescuers in the field:  Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Mark Danielczyk, Gary Janz, Garry Deckert, Will Rudolphi, Vane Clayton and Luke Benedict. 

Farm Rescue was also honored to share some big news this week, as John Deere announced an upcoming virtual benefit concert for our nonprofit organization. This free event will feature live-streamed performances by Dustin Lynch, Maddie & Tae, Mickey Guyton, Travis Denning and Tyler Farr. "The Farm Must Go On by John Deere" will broadcast on Dec. 9 at 7:00 p.m. CST and will be streamed to the general public on YouTube. All proceeds from the event will benefit Farm Rescue assistance operations and we are so thankful to John Deere and the amazing artists involved in this concert for furthering our mission! For more information on how to livestream the event, as well as to make a donation and support farmers in need, visit TheFarmMustGoOn.com We hope you'll all tune-in to watch!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


October 16, 2020 - First Corn

It's been a busy week amongst the corn stalks for our volunteers, as conditions were favorable for a bit of harvest progress. Crew number one has spent the past few days near Browns Valley, MN assisting a couple with their corn crop. The wife in this family operation is currently battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer and is unable to take her usual seat behind the wheel of their combine. Some mid-week precipitation halted work for our volunteers, but they're back in the field today and hope to tackle the remaining corn acres over the weekend. Crew number two has been covering some ground near Chelsea, SD for another farming couple, as the husband continues his recovery from an ATV accident in which he sustained major head trauma. The couple is currently at a skilled nursing facility in Lincoln, NE and have been unable to participate in harvesting the beautiful corn crop they planted this past spring. Thankfully, their son-in-law has been on-site to provide useful knowledge and instruction to our dedicated volunteers. We are honored to assist these families, as they focus on their recovery and getting back in the field for 2021! A very special thank you to our Farm Rescuers in the field this week: Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Mark Danielczyk, Alan Enger, Gary Janz, Steve Burbach, Doug Dunlay, Paul Wannarka and Luke Benedict. You are all truly cut from a special cloth and we are extremely blessed to have you in our volunteer family!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


October 9, 2020 - Bean There, Done That

Knock on wood, it's been a pretty cooperative harvest season on the weather front, thus far. There have been very few rain delays and field conditions have been much better compared to the muddy mess that many farmers dealt with in 2019. This week, crew number one was able to make some progress near Nome, ND, as they finished up soybeans for a young farmer recovering from a recent car accident. After suffering a neck fracture in the crash, he's been unable to operate any machinery since early August. Farm Rescue was honored to assist this same family operation back in 2009, and despite the circumstances, we're pleased to see the next generation carrying on the family farming tradition. From Nome, our volunteers traveled east to Browns Valley, MN to assist another family with their corn harvest. The wife (and main combine operator) in this operation is currently battling stage 4 pancreatic cancer and is unable to perform her usual duties amidst her ongoing treatments. We're hoping conditions are right to begin combining within the next couple days. Crew number two tackled a few hundred acres of soybeans and corn for a farmer near Sioux Falls, SD. He has been very limited in his mobility as a result of an inflammatory condition affecting his muscles and skin. Thankfully, our volunteers were able to complete their work before a scheduled major surgery to remove some concerning lumps on his lymph nodes. Our Farm Rescuers have now relocated to Chelsea, SD to assist a farmer recovering from major head trauma after an ATV accident. They will be helping the family through their ongoing corn harvest. These operations have made for some long days and long road trips for our volunteers and we can't thank them enough for their dedication to this mission. Special thanks to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Paul & Carolyn Holgate, Kevin Towe, Bob Miller, Gary Janz, Kenneth Chyle, Sharon Hanson, Emil Baranko and Albert Lautenschlager. 

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


October 2, 2020 - Soybean Support

After wrapping up our final wheat harvest case of the year near Mercer, ND and likely our final haying assistance case near Hurdsfield, ND, our volunteers and Field Operations Manager had just enough time to catch their breath before kicking-off our soybean and corn efforts. Today, we have two crews in the field helping another pair of farmers who are dealing with a major crisis. Crew number one is near Nome, ND to tackle a few hundred acres of soybeans for a young farmer who recently suffered a neck fracture in a car accident. He's currently unable to operate machinery and we are honored to help him overcome this hurdle. Crew number two also began harvesting today for a Sioux Falls, SD farmer dealing with several medical complications. He had been exhibiting symptoms of Dermatomyositis - a type of inflammatory myopathy characterized by inflammatory and degenerative changes of the muscles and skin. This has greatly reduced his mobility and prevented him from carrying out his necessary farm work. A body scan also showed two masses in his neck, which doctors believe are affecting his immune system. Our volunteers are happy to assist with the family's soybeans and corn, while he undergoes further tests and treatments. With recent dry weather, combines and trucks are out in full force and we pray for a safe and fruitful harvest for everyone. Farm Rescue will be very busy throughout the next several weeks, which makes us all the more thankful for our amazing volunteers and supporters. This mission would not be possible without you! Special thanks to our recent Farm Rescuers in the field: David Frueh, Paul Holgate, Gary Janz, Kevin Towe, Glen Haekenkamp, Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Sharon Hanson and Albert Lautenschlager. 

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


September 11, 2020 - A Shrinking Window

The window of opportunity to harvest wheat and hay crops is getting smaller by the day, and our volunteers have been hard at work to help a few more families in need across the finish line. Crew number one wrapped up their wheat assistance efforts near Des Lacs, ND for a farmer recovering from back surgery. From there, they picked up our tractor and baler to roll some hay near Hurdsfield, ND for a farmer recently diagnosed with bladder cancer. We are honored to be helping this generational Simmental operation make a few hundred bales to feed their cattle through the winter months. Crew number two finished their wheat combining near Zap, ND for a family who lost a shop and most of their farming equipment to a fire. They've since moved south of Mercer, ND to assist a farmer whose wife is battling lung cancer. Their 17-year-old grandson, who provides much of their help in the field, is also recovering from a serious car accident. He's also returning home from Mayo Clinic this week, after a body scan revealed a spot on his pancreas that needed further testing and treatment. Some later-than-average planting and a recent shot of rain has slowed the start of our wheat harvest assistance for the family, but we're hoping to make some progress by Sunday or Monday. The weather turned cold for a bit this week, as well, with an early frost wreaking havoc on a few crops in the area. Corn and soybean harvest is just around the corner and preparations have already begun on our equipment for a few more assistance cases on the schedule. It's truly one of the busiest times of year for farmers and ranchers and we hope everyone stays safe as they continue reaping this year's bounty. A very special thanks to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Mike Platt, Rick Davidson, David Frueh, Larry Leier, Paul Holgate and Don Gilberg. 

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


September 4, 2020 - Backyard Blessings

Call me biased, but there is something truly special about the mission of Farm Rescue. In simplest terms, we exist to help farm families through a tough time in their life. But what makes me especially proud to be part of this organization is the number of folks who rally behind that concept and support our efforts in the most gracious of ways. Sometimes, it's a random donation handed to a Farm Rescue volunteer at a gas station to further our mission. Other times, it's a complete stranger picking up a meal tab for our Angels in Blue to show appreciation for the help they're providing to a member of their community. It may just be a simple wave or head nod from another driver, who sees the logo on our pickup or equipment and knows exactly why we're there. People still care about people, and there's no better example of that than Farm Rescue.

I say all of this because the photo you see above is another wonderful display of support for our mission. Jayme Burkhart, who works for one of our business sponsors (CHS SunPrairie/Dakota Agronomy Partners), heard Farm Rescue was helping in her area and wanted to provide a meal to the volunteers on site. As luck would have it, our combine was operating nearby... literally, in her own backyard. Our Farm Rescuers were blessed with a delicious meal and Jayme's boys had a front row seat for all the action. We are truly thankful to the Burkharts and many others who support our efforts through random acts of kindness. This particular team of volunteers was assisting a farmer near Des Lacs, ND, who is recovering from a recent back surgery. A second crew spent most of their week near Zap, ND, harvesting wheat for a family who lost a shop and most of their farming equipment in a major fire. Our wheat efforts are beginning to wind down, with another assistance case set to begin near Mercer, ND for a farmer battling cancer. Our baler will be operating just to the east, near Hurdsfield, ND, as volunteers assist another farmer/rancher who was recently diagnosed with cancer. As we enter this Labor Day Weekend, I'm overcome with gratitude for our amazing family of do-gooders, who labor tirelessly for others in their time of need. A very special thanks to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Gary Janz, Paul Holgate, Albert Lautenschlager, Erv Geisler, Mike Platt and Rick Davidson. None of this is possible without you!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


August 28, 2020 - The Great Wheat Race

It's been another week of many miles traveled and acres harvested for our Angels in Blue. Crew number 1 wrapped up their wheat harvest assistance over the weekend for our 700th family near Sawyer, ND, as the farmer continues his recovery from a recent surgery. From there, they headed just down the road to another Sawyer address to harvest wheat for a farmer dealing with an illness. Thankfully, Mother Nature decided to cooperate and our volunteers were able to finish the last of their acres, just before the rain rolled in. They've now moved on to Zap, ND to help a family who lost a shop and most of their farming equipment in a major fire. Crew number 2 completed some wheat harvest assistance of their own near Rugby, ND for a farmer battling multiple sclerosis. They ventured East to Mahnomen, MN to tackle a few hundred more acres of wheat for a farmer in the midst of a cancer battle. The weather was kind to them, as well, and they've since moved back to western North Dakota to a farm near Des Lacs, ND, where a farmer is recovering from a recent back surgery. Some of our upcoming fields have a few more days of maturing to do, so hopefully our machines are out making dust again soon! Special thanks to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Gary Janz, David Frueh and Paul Holgate. Thank you for your incredible dedication to helping farm families in need!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


August 21, 2020 - 700 Families Strong

This week, Farm Rescue volunteers were extremely honored to assist our 700th farm family! This milestone would never have been possible without the support of many individuals, families, businesses and organizations, who truly believe in this mission. Your generosity has impacted the lives and livelihoods of many farms and ranches across the Midwest. The fourth-generation farm of Joel and Karmell Newman near Sawyer, ND was the site of this historic event, where a larger-than-average group of Farm Rescuers converged with equipment to provide wheat harvest assistance, as Joel recovers from a recent surgery. The Newman family, their neighbors and several local businesses were tremendously gracious hosts, providing meals and cold drinks to our hardworking team of do-gooders. Special thanks to the Minot Area Chamber of Commerce Agribusiness Committee, Town & Country Insurance Agency, Dakota Agronomy Partners, CHS SunPrairie and Farm Credit Services of North Dakota for keeping our Farm Rescuers well-fed! And another big thank you to John Deere, Gooseneck Implement and PrairieLand Partners, LLC for powering our work in the field! Our volunteers and equipment have now branched out to other wheat harvest cases in the area, including another near Sawyer for a farmer dealing with an illness. A second crew is just wrapping up a few hundred acres of wheat near Rugby, ND for a farmer battling multiple sclerosis. From there, they'll be heading east to Mahnomen, MN to assist a farmer currently receiving cancer treatments. Our heart also goes out to everyone in Iowa and the surrounding region who are dealing with the aftermath of the devastating derecho storm. Farm Rescue has been visiting with families and volunteers in the area to assess how we might best serve producers during their recovery efforts, whether through harvest assistance or grain hauling. As we work to form a proper game plan, we continue to pray for all those affected. 

We are eternally grateful to the volunteers carrying out the mission of Farm Rescue, especially those serving as our boots on the ground this harvest season. Thank you to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Gary Janz, Garry Deckert, Mike Melaas, Emil Baranko, Kenneth Chyle, Paul Holgate, Carolyn Holgate, Albert Lautenschlager, Charlie Bartsch, Shaun Sipma, Kyle Nelsen and Kirby Heybourne. We appreciate each and every one of you who has played a role in helping Farm Rescue assist 700 families in crisis. Through your continued support, we are poised and ready to assist hundreds more! 

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


August 14, 2020 - Reaching a Milestone

It's been awhile since we provided an update, but rest assured our volunteers and staff have been keeping busier than ever. Our haying assistance efforts wrapped up a couple weeks back and we've been gearing up for a busy harvest schedule ever since. Inspections, maintenance and logistical planning to accommodate the growing list of assistance requests are just a few of the tasks that have been carried out, and I know everyone is anxious to get back in the field. Special thanks to Gooseneck Implement and PrairieLand Partners for making sure our beautiful John Deere combines are ready for the season ahead. 

Our first wheat harvest case for our northern territory marks an historic milestone for Farm Rescue, as it will be our 700th assisted family! That mark would never have been possible without an incredible family of supporters. To the volunteers, individual donors and business sponsors who continue to believe in this mission, we are truly grateful. Our organization simply would not exist without these amazing Farm Rescuers. The Newman farm, near Sawyer, ND, is the site of this 700th case and we are extremely honored to provide assistance to such a wonderful generational operation. Joel Newman recently underwent liver and bile duct resection surgery, which requires a recovery period of around two months. The timing of the surgery and rehabilitation are interfering with the Newmans' harvest operations and Farm Rescue volunteers plan to combine 900 acres of wheat for the family. Recent rain showers have delayed their start, but we're hoping a couple days of sun and wind allow for a few days of progress. Additional assistance cases are already on the schedule and it's shaping up to be a very busy harvest! Another big thank you to our fantastic family of volunteers, especially those who have been working in the field and on the road these past few weeks, including Keith Barkema, Austin Magruder, David Frueh, Kieth Worthley, Larry Leier, Gary Janz, Garry Deckert, Clyde Mermis, Mike Melaas, Emil Baranko, Kenneth Chyle, Paul Holgate, Albert Lautenschlager and anyone else I may have missed! You truly are our Angels in Blue!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


July 3, 2020 - Battling Heat in the Wheat State

It's been a couple weeks since we last checked in, but there's definitely been no shortage of activity. As haying season continues in our northern service territory, we were honored to assist our very first family in the state of Kansas! This particular farmer sustained a pretty severe leg injury while working with a post hole digger. Our volunteers braved the heat and were honored to harvest a few hundred acres of wheat for the family with our beautiful new S780 combine, sponsored by John Deere and local dealer, PrairieLand Partners. Entering a new state is no simple task and we feel truly blessed to have support from the amazing folks at PrairieLand and John Deere. As harvest assistance kicked-off in our southern territory, haying operations progressed in our northern region. After making around 600 bales near Drake, ND for a rancher battling bladder cancer, our volunteers headed southwest to New Leipzig, ND to cut hay for another rancher recovering from a recent hip surgery. Temps have been very high throughout our 7-state service area and it serves as another reminder of how lucky we are to have such amazing volunteers to carry out this mission. Whether battling extreme heat, gale force winds or bitter cold, these Farm Rescuers get the job done right and ask nothing in return. It bears repeating, if you're looking for a bright spot in an often-dark world, look no further than a Farm Rescue volunteer. Special thanks to the amazing team of do-gooders in the fields and on the roads this week: Rick Davidson, Alan Bryce, Keith Barkema, David Frueh, Dave Zimmer, Bob Miller and Heidi Kjono. We hope you all have a safe and wonderful Independence Day!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


June 19, 2020 - No Rest for the Weary

It's been a very windy week near our North Dakota home base, and it seems to have blown us right into the next season of assistance. Our planting efforts just officially wrapped up, but haying season is already in full swing. Crew 1 transported their seeding unit to one of our generous implement sponsors, True North Equipment, for some well-deserved R & R and maintenance. These machines have covered a lot of ground this year to support farmers in need and they withstood every challenge placed before them. We feel truly blessed to have such high-quality John Deere equipment at our disposal to carry out this mission. Crew 2 finished up a few more acres near Jud, ND for a farmer injured by one of his cows. Volunteer planting was also completed near Edgeley, ND for a farmer battling cancer. That seeding unit is now receiving some tender loving care of its own at another valued implement sponsor, Green Iron Equipment. As you've probably discovered by now, it takes many individuals, organizations and businesses to bring this all together. We are extremely grateful to all who contribute to the greater good of Farm Rescue!

As mentioned earlier, our volunteers have been providing some haying assistance this week near Drake, ND for a farmer/rancher who is in the midst of his second battle with cancer. His son has been working hard to manage the family operation, but a recent baler fire created some additional challenges. Farm Rescue is honored to provide support during their haying efforts. As baling continues in our northern territory, our organization is still working hard to spread word of our harvest assistance offerings in the newly-added state of Kansas. If you know anyone in the Jayhawk State experiencing a major injury, illness or natural disaster who could use a hand with harvest work, be sure to point them in our direction!

It was also a bittersweet week in the Farm Rescue office, as we bid farewell to longtime staffer, Lynne Olien. She has been an instrumental member of our organization for the past 5 years, wearing just about every hat you can imagine. If you've ever called our office, you've likely spoken with her directly, or received an email or text message from her at some point in time. It's impossible to list all of her contributions, but she truly epitomizes what it means to be a Farm Rescuer. Lynne has always made helping others a top priority and we feel blessed to have had her on our team this past half-decade. Although she is answering a new career calling, she plans to continue assisting Farm Rescue whenever possible. We wish her all the best in her next adventure! Lastly, a very special thank you to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field:  Garry Deckert, David Frueh, Rick Davidson, Bill Bjorneby and Kenny Crites. It's true what they say - "Not all superheroes wear capes."

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


June 5, 2020 - The Home Stretch

We're getting very close to wrapping up our planting assistance operations for 2020 and we are truly blessed to have had one of the most cooperative weather weeks of the season. Outside of a few sprinkles, our crews saw plenty of sunshine and wind to dry out some of the wetter soil in our service territory. Crew 1 spent the first half of their week near Rugby, ND planting barley and soybeans for a farmer batting cancer. It’s not every day our air seeding equipment works the same field as a farmer’s combine, but that’s been the strange reality for a lot of folks this year. After finishing in Rugby, our volunteers headed northeast to Edmore, ND to plant wheat and canola for a farmer who is very limited in his mobility, following a COVID-19 battle back in March. Thanks to the help of our amazing Farm Rescuers, he can now focus on his rehab and recovery in hopes of returning to the field for harvest work. Crew 2 spent their week near Jud, ND planting wheat for a farmer who was severely injured by one of his cows. Field conditions were still pretty wet when they arrived, but our Angels in Blue made progress where they could and were able to seed a few hundred acres for this farmer, as he recovers from several broken ribs and a broken shoulder. Our volunteers will now wrap up this season's planting efforts near Edgeley, ND, assisting another farmer battling prostate cancer. Our prayers go out to everyone working in the field to plant this year's crops, and in some cases, harvest last year's. Please help us in sending a few extra prayers for the amazing farm families we assist, as they strive to return to the work they love.

This weekend brings an exciting event for our nonprofit, as NASCAR drivers Kevin Harvick and Clint Bowyer will be racing in Busch Light corn-themed race cars in Atlanta, featuring the Farm Rescue logo and the hashtag - #ForTheFarmers. We're hoping this helps spread word of our Good Samaritan efforts and the wonderful folks who make it all possible! Thank you to Busch for helping to fund our recent launch into the state of Kansas for harvest assistance operations. If you know someone who might benefit from Farm Rescue's harvest assistance efforts anywhere in our 7-state service area, please visit farmrescue.org or call 701-252-2017! Last, but not least, we want to give a HUGE shoutout to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Sharon Hanson, Lee Van Ruler, Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko and David Frueh. Each and every one of you is a blessing to our organization!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Program Manager


May 29, 2020 - Kansas, Here We Come!

This week marked another milestone in the history of Farm Rescue, as we announced the addition of Kansas to our service territory. Operations in the Jayhawk State will begin with harvest assistance ONLY in 2020, with hopes of adding more services as further resources become available. Anheuser-Busch/Busch Beer has been instrumental in helping us achieve this goal, by providing the necessary funding to launch our assistance efforts in this new state. We're hoping the word spreads quickly and applications start arriving soon from Kansas farm families in need of our help. If you know someone who might benefit from Farm Rescue's harvest assistance efforts anywhere in our 7-state service area, please visit farmrescue.org or call 701-252-2017!

With Kansas harvest fast-approaching, our volunteer planting crews are still hard at work seeding the last few crops of the year in our northern states. Crew number 1 spent much of the week near Sharon, ND planting wheat and beans for a farmer battling throat cancer. They're now heading to Rugby, ND to seed a few acres of barley and beans for another farmer fighting prostate cancer. Crew number 2 began their week in Hoven, SD to finish up some soybean planting for a farmer dealing with a heart condition. After roading the equipment to Jud, ND, a few rain showers delayed their start. Thanks to a few days of sun and wind, and a favorable forecast for the weekend, they're now hoping to make progress on some wheat planting for a farmer injured by one of his cows. Despite the stranger-than-average start to the year, we feel very blessed to have made some great progress throughout the region to assist families in crisis. That's all thanks to some amazing volunteers, dedicated to this Good Samaritan mission. Special thanks to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Mike Youngblood, Greg Kalinoski, Lee Van Ruler and Sharon Hanson!

Until next week,

Dan Erdmann, Marketing Communications Officer


May 22, 2020 - Burning the Midnight Oil

It's been a very productive week for our assistance efforts and that is a direct result of the hard work and dedication of our volunteers. If you've read any of our prior weekly updates, it may seem like we do an awful lot of bragging about our Angels in Blue. That's only because they deserve it! These amazing individuals are the lifeblood of our work and we relish any opportunity to talk them up. They devote some very long days (and often nights) to assist farm and ranch families in crisis, and never ask anything in return. They're here to help, plain and simple. So, if you're looking for some uplifting news and positive stories in today's crazy world, look no further than Farm Rescue. 

Crew number 1 spent much of their week near Bowbells, ND planting soybeans for a farmer who's currently receiving treatments for liver cancer. After a good shot of moisture delayed their start, they made some great progress and have now begun the journey to Sharon, ND. Their plan is to seed several hundred acres of wheat and soybeans for a farmer battling throat cancer. Crew number 2 made the most of their cooperative weather and seeded more than 1,600 acres in 6 days, with another 200+ miles of roading the equipment. They began their week near Elgin, ND, wrapping up some oat acres for a farmer who was injured in an ATV accident. From there, they headed East to New Salem, ND to plant beans for another farmer who sustained a broken leg and ankle in a 4-wheeling accident. After that, they crossed the border into South Dakota to seed wheat near Lemmon for a farmer dealing with an illness. They've now moved back to Hoven, SD, to resume planting beans for a farmer dealing with a heart condition. With the window soon closing on planting season, we hope to keep up the pace and help a few more families in need. A big thank you goes out to John Deere Seeding Group in Valley City, ND and Gooseneck Implement in Lemmon, SD for all your help in keeping our equipment running strong in the field! Another sincere thank you goes out to the amazing volunteers serving as our boots-on-the-ground to fulfill our mission, including Mark Baumgarten, Ken Enstrom, Heidi Kjono, David Frueh, Albert Lautenschlager, Kenneth Chyle, Emil Baranko, Jeff Preston, Paul Zierke, Mike Youngblood and Greg Kalinoski. You're all heroes in our book!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann, Marketing Communications Officer


May 15, 2020 - Social Distance Assistance

The year 2020 has definitely been one for the history books. As states struggle with decisions to reopen businesses and loosen some of the current COVID restrictions, Farm Rescue and our volunteers have been trying the best we can to operate in the usual fashion. Of course, a few changes have been implemented to keep both our assisted families and Angels in Blue as safe as possible. That means frequent sanitizing of equipment and tools, maintaining distance from one other and using masks whenever working in close quarters. So far, our volunteers have adapted well and still find ways to have fun with it all, but I think one of the greatest challenges has been the limited interaction with the families they assist. Farm Rescue has always been a conduit for handshakes and hugs, so it seems a bit strange to witness a distant wave or an elbow bump between such friendly and caring individuals. There's still a tremendous amount of gratitude shown for the work Farm Rescue is doing, but we definitely look forward to the day when hugs make their long-awaited return! It's been another wet week for portions of the region, with some additional rain and even snow in parts of our service area. Crew number 1 wrapped up their wheat planting near Lambert, MT for a farmer recovering from a stroke. From there, they made the long journey to Bowbells, ND to seed soybeans for a farmer currently receiving liver cancer treatments. Rain and snow preceded their arrival, so the next volunteer crew is currently en route to pick up the reigns when conditions improve. Crew number 2 began the week in Hoven, SD, but wet conditions there prompted a change of plans, as well. They've now moved near Elgin, ND to plant a few hundred acres of oats for a farmer who was injured in an ATV accident. The plan is to return to Hoven once things dry out, with a few other stops scheduled along the way. Our volunteers have covered a lot of ground, thus far, with many miles and acres ahead! As always, we want to thank all of those who make this mission possible, especially this week's Farm Rescuers in the field:  Tom Meyer, Ron Donohue, Garry Deckert, Mark Baumgarten, Ken Enstrom, David Frueh and Albert Lautenschlager. 

Until next week,

Dan Erdmann, Marketing Communications Officer


May 8, 2020 - Some Rain, Some Gain

There's no such thing as a perfect planting season, and that is proving true once again in 2020. After a solid start to our assistance efforts, crew number 2 experienced its first big rain delay of the year. Seeding work was already underway near Hoven, SD to assist a farmer dealing with heart issues, when nearly two inches of rain fell in a 24-hour period. That was enough to halt progress for a few days, but things seem to be drying out and our volunteers are anxious to get back in the field. In the meantime, crew number 1 has had better luck and is burning the midnight oil to make use of the cooperative weather. They began their week near Belfield, ND to plant some canola acres for a farmer battling cancer. From there, they headed northwest to Lambert, MT to assist a farmer recovering from a stroke. Both teams have done some amazing work and covered many miles and acres, thus far. Another group of volunteers is poised and ready to pick up the torch and continue our mission in the coming week. We feel so blessed to have such a capable family of do-gooders to serve as our boots on the ground in assisting farm families in need. A huge thank you to this week's Farm Rescuers in the field: Garry Deckert, Albert Lautenschlager, Mike Youngblood, Greg Kalinoski, Tom Meyer and Ron Donohue. We are honored to have you all!

Until next time,

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer


May 1, 2020 - Rays of Hope

With so much uncertainty in the world at the moment, it's especially comforting to be back in the field planting the first seeds of 2020. Something about this time of year always brings a renewed sense of hope to so many and what could be better right now? Things may be far from normal, but we feel truly blessed to be carrying out our Good Samaritan mission to the best of our ability. That's all thanks to our dedicated volunteers, who have been putting in some long days to sow the seeds of hope for farm families in crisis. Crew number 1 spent a few days this week near Regent, ND to plant wheat for a farmer who was injured by one of his cows. They've now moved West to Belfield, ND to plant a few hundred acres of canola for a farmer battling cancer. Crew number 2 started the week planting wheat near Linton, ND for another farmer receiving cancer treatments. A new batch of volunteers are now headed to the Hoven, SD area to assist in seeding soybeans for a farmer dealing with heart issues. So far, the weather has been relatively cooperative (except for some light showers) and we pray that trend continues. Sometimes weather delays do make for some amazing photo opportunities, however. Just another reminder that storms don't last forever and beauty is more easily appreciated once they've passed. We can't extend a big enough thank you to our Farm Rescuers in the field for carrying out these assistance efforts, including Garry Deckert, Albert Lautenschlager, David Frueh, Larry Leier, Mark Benson, Bob Miller, Mike Youngblood and Greg Kalinoski. 

Until next week,

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer


April 24, 2020 - On the Road Again

Welcome to Farm Rescue 2020! We feel truly blessed to continue our assistance operations for another year, and that's all thanks to our amazing family of volunteers, donors, business sponsors and the many others who support our mission. To say it's been an interesting start to the year would be an understatement. The COVID-19 pandemic has much of the world in disarray, including many businesses and nonprofits. Farm Rescue is definitely navigating some uncharted waters, but our board of directors, full-time staff and volunteer workforce are taking the necessary precautions and updating protocols to ensure operations can continue as safely as possible. Unfortunately, that means many of our out-of-state Angels in Blue will be missing out on some of their annual planting assistance work, but everyone has been very understanding in the current situation. We hope some of the quarantine rules and travel restrictions will be lifted soon to allow more of our long-distance volunteers an opportunity to serve with our organization once again. Thankfully, many local Farm Rescue volunteers are stepping up to assist farm families in their area.

If things weren't strange enough amidst the pandemic, we also had our first harvest assistance case of the year... in the month of April. Due to wet conditions extending through the fall of 2019, many crops were left standing throughout the winter months. We were honored to assist a farmer near Valley City, ND with his remaining corn harvest after he suffered a broken leg. Most recently, our Field Operations Manager, Luke Benedict, and several local volunteers have been prepping our seeding equipment for the long weeks ahead. Today, Crew 1 is en route to our first planting assistance case near Regent, ND, to assist a farmer whose abilities have been greatly hindered by a broken arm. Crew 2 will be working near Linton, ND the next few days to plant a few hundred acres of wheat for a farmer battling cancer. More assistance cases are on the schedule for the coming weeks and we'll be praying for more cooperative weather than 2019 had to offer! Special thanks to our most recent Farm Rescuers in the field - Garry Deckert, David Frueh, Mark Benson, Larry Leier, Albert Lautenschlager and Luke Benedict. Another big thank you goes out to the amazing business sponsors who provided parts and services to ready our equipment for the season ahead, including John Deere Seeding Group, Leading Edge Equipment, Green Iron Equipment, Langdon Implement and True North Equipment. We couldn't accomplish this mission without you!

Until next time, stay safe and God bless!

Dan Erdmann - Marketing Communications Officer

FEATURED SPONSOR

FARM RESCUE SPONSOR - John Deere

FEATURED VOLUNTEER

FEATURED VOLUNTEER - Larry Leier

FEATURED RESCUE

Farm Rescue 2019 - McClusky, ND