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Monmouth harvest is a labor of love for caring community

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Tyler and Brandon Gillen have a lot to think about on Tuesday. Their dad, Dave Gillen, 61, underwent quadruple bypass surgery on Monday.

"He recovered real quick last night," Brandon said. "He's actually sitting up in a chair this morning."

But with six farms and some 400 acres to harvest, it's a monumental task.

"It would take forever, I think, if we were to do it as a family ourselves," said Tyler.

That's why this caring community is responding. Their Pioneer seed dealer, Jim Missavage, gathered some 70 friends and farmers, along with lots of combines and trucks.

"It was unbelievable," Tyler said. "It just kept getting bigger and bigger and bigger."

All of them rolling into action to volunteer. Farmers were taking time out from their own harvests to lend a helping hand.

"If somebody else was in trouble, he'd be doing the same thing for them," said Scott MItchell, an account manager for Pioneer Hi-Bred.

This group harvest is a farming tradition. When one farmer needs help, others are ready to pitch in and get the job done.

Dave's brother, Richard Gillen, is busy in one combine.

"You tell me when and where," he said.

They'll harvest in hours what normally takes days to complete. Each row is a real achievement. It's a testament to teamwork. They were done just before noon.

"It's not a huge deal for any of these guys to do this," said Brandon. "But it's an awfully big deal when you're the one being helped."

This is just a way to pay it forward. Dave Gillen helped many farmers in the past. Now, it's their turn to help him.

"He couldn't believe that everyone would be so kind," said Tyler. "That everyone cared so much about him."

A community providing good care for a friend and his crops.


  • Janet Leach

    It is wonderful to be from such a caring community.
    My sister’s home caught fire and burned a few years ago near
    Gladstone, Il. Everyone came together to help her salvage anything.
    They came back and covered her foundation to protect it in the winter
    months .
    I was born in Galesburg and raised in Burlington, Iowa.
    I have so many wonderful memories and family ties to these
    communities. I have MANY “GREAT STORIES” that I could tell
    about the “GREAT PEOPLE” from this area. It made my day to
    see this article!

  • Ken

    I wish you could write the book of these memories. GREAT STORIES OF EVERYDAY PEOPLE. Change the name and place to protect the town but tell the wonderful stories. I would definitely read it. Love stories like this one,

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