I can’t believe it’s been a whole year, but on this date last year, the feed efficiency-testing center blew away. I can still picture it vividly. Dad and I had weighed some calves down there in the morning and had finished up about 11. I went home to work on paperwork and get lunch, then this storm started to roll in. Around 2:00, the wind blew so bad I went to the basement. When I came back upstairs to check things out, I was relieved to see nothing had been damaged. So, I went back to work and thought nothing more about it.
About two minutes later Joe called and said, “The beef center blew away. You better get down there and make sure the cattle are okay.” (You see, Joe was mowing a pasture a mile north of the beef center and was also right in the path of the storm. He said his tractor started shaking and moving around and he was pretty sure he was going up with the wind.)
When I got to the beef center, I saw that miraculously, all the cattle were just fine. But the buildings were not. It took all of the east barn except for the section over the working facility and office. And the west barn was twisted around pretty good, but most of it was still standing.
But within minutes of me arriving, it seemed like the whole community had heard about it as so many wonderful people came to help clean up. By that night, we had the alleys cleared so we could feed and most of the debris, which was strung throughout the pasture, piled up. (And I use the term “we” here loosely because I mostly walked around in shock while everyone else did the work.)
It was amazing. I can’t thank all our friends and neighbors enough. It was a day I’d like to forget, but the support from the community is second to none.
It’s also fitting to note that today is Veteran’s Day and even though I thought it was tough to lose our barns, it’s nothing compared to the sacrifices our veterans and veteran’s families make and have made. God bless you and thank you for your faithful service! Without you, it wouldn’t be possible to have the freedoms we have and I am so thankful for your dedication to our country. May God bless you!