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Minn. farmers support a local family

Minn. farmers support a local family

A group of producers helped a family finish harvest after another farmer passed away

By Diego Flammini
Staff Writer

A group of Minnesota farmers put their harvests on hold to help a grieving family.

Zach Johnson, a fifth-generation farmer from Lowry, Minn., and others donated time and equipment to help a local family finish harvest after an unexpected passing of a relative.

Together, Johnson and other farmers used four combines to harvest 200 acres of soybeans for the Johnson family (no relation to Zach) while they were saying their final goodbyes to Norman, a farmer for 60 years, who passed away at the age of 85 on Oct. 24.

In addition, the local co-op sent trucks to the farm to transport the grain.

“When tough things happen to good people, you hope the communities will rally together and help out,” Zach told WCCO. “Someday, if my family needs help like that, I would certainly hope that what goes around comes around. In the meantime, we help out who we can.”

Johnson, who shares his ag experiences on his MN Millennial Farmer social media pages, posted a video from inside his combine cab during the harvest.

Instances like this can help dispel myths surrounding commercial agriculture.

“This is big, evil corporate factory farming, people helping people,” he said in the video. “We are still America’s farm families, more proud than ever to do what we do. And that’s provide the world with food, fiber, fuel, and help each other out.”

The video on Johnson’s Facebook page has been shared more than 100,000 times and has nearly 6,000 comments.

Some of those comments are from other farmers sharing similar experiences.

“We stopped corn harvest and went to a neighbor in need too to get 230 acres of beans out for him,” Nicholas Leonard Gotto, a farmer from Oto, Iowa, posted on the Facebook page. has reached out to Johnson for comment on the community harvest.


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