Lifestyle & Human Interest

Neighbors Show Up To Help Farmer with Terminal Cancer When He Can't Finish Harvesting Crops


Most people receive their paychecks regularly, every few weeks, with an expected and agreed upon amount. There is little variability in how much they earn and they can count on stability with their income.

Farmers, on the other hand, do not have this luxury and are at the mercy of many variables for how much money they are able to make. Each and every year, a farmer must depend on the fruits of their labor in order to survive and prepare for the next crop.

Their health is paramount to their work planting, growing, and harvesting crops. So chronic illness can be devastating for a farmer.

Unfortunately, Carl Bates of Galva, Illinois, was battling terminal cancer, leaving him in poor condition and unable to harvest the crops he worked so hard to grow.

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Bates’ family members help with most of the work, but he was always the one to make the farm run efficiently and get the job done. He was concerned they were going to lose a large portion of their crops, and with his medical bills piling up, the family needed all the help they could get.

Swallowing their pride, the Bates reached out to a few other farmers in town asking for a little help. But when they showed up at the farm, Bates was in disbelief.

An army of local farmers had traveled to his land to lend a helping hand. Jason Bates, Carl’s cousin, said, “With this being a small town, [all of the farmers] talk and word spread.”

“We had ten combines, sixteen semis, and around forty people,” Carl said, “We ended up with all these people showing up and had to organize.”

In addition to local farmers showing up and volunteering their time and machines, local businesses donated equipment and food for the Bates family and all the volunteers who showed up to help.

Unable to do any work himself because of his poor health, Bates rode around the farm in his pickup truck encouraging his friends, expressing his gratitude, and making sure they understood just how touched he was by their compassion.

“With all the kind thoughts and prayers, it’s been very humbling and heartfelt and has meant a lot to the family,” he said.

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At the end of the day, he was extremely impressed by the work they had done. All of his crops had been harvested!

Bates said, “It took about ten hours to harvest all 450 acres, which would have otherwise taken us nearly a week. One of the things we’ve noticed is how great it is to see people help each other for a change as opposed to all the bad news stories out there.”

It’s absolutely amazing just how much can get done when people come together and work alongside each other.

In only 10 hours, Carl Bates and his family were blessed with a harvest they did not know if they would be able to reap and were given peace of mind in a tumultuous time.

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Elias Manzella is a former contributor to a Liftable Media property.
Elias Manzella is a former contributor to a Liftable Media property.
Topics of Expertise
Human Interest, Medical