Walton – Dean Sullivan recalled his father, Gerald Sullivan, wanting to plant corn in his final year before retirement. He told the story to area farmers and friends and family who gathered Wednesday as a tribute to Gerald Sullivan, who passed away in September.
Gerald Sullivan, who talked of it being his last crop before retirement, passed away before he was able to harvest the 600 acres. Dean Sullivan told those in attendance how his father had told him he loved corn — he wanted to shell it and he wanted to run a combine.
Although Gerald Sullivan wasn’t able to harvest his crop, local farmers and families banded together to make sure it was taken care of.
Joe Johnson, with The Andersons Inc. in Walton, one of the people who spearheaded the tribute, said the farmers wanted to bring in Gerald Sullivan’s final crop.
Local farmers came together to harvest all 600 acres; 300 are in Cass County and 300 are in Howard County.
“We’re here to take care of Gerald’s last crop,” Johnson said. “That’s our job.”
About 70 people, including friends and family, gathered, shared coffee, hugged each other, laughed and cried before local farmers went out to take care of the corn.
“When you run the combine today, think of dad,” Dean Sullivan said to farmers.
Because of rain, work began around 10:30 a.m. Johnson said there were eight combines in Cass County and six in Howard County, as well as numerous grain carts and semis.
Several family members spoke and thanked everyone for coming. Stan Rybolt, Gerald Sullivan’s son-in-law, said the support people have shown has been great.
“The day of the accident people were calling in saying they wanted to put something together,” Rybolt said. “I don’t know how to describe the support. I have such an appreciation for what everyone is doing. The family is thankful.”