- Associated Press - Saturday, October 10, 2015

MEXICO, Mo. (AP) - When Michael Sweitzer lost his balance and fell from his combine, he thought he might lose more than half of his 185-acre corn crop in central Missouri.

The fall left him with three broken ribs and a punctured lung, which doctors said would take up to two months to heal. The future of the 110 acres of corn he had yet to harvest looked grim, The Mexico Ledger reported (https://bit.ly/1L3GJF2 ).

But friends, family and neighbors showed up Tuesday with their own equipment and supplies to pick up where Sweitzer left off.

Randy Groves said he found out about the accident and called John Cauthorn, who farms near the Sweitzers, to see if he could lend his truck for hauling Sweitzer’s grain. Cauthorn agreed to lend his equipment as well as his time, volunteering to harvest the corn himself.

“It’s such a dream,” said Mary Ellen Sweitzer, Michael’s mother. “There are angels all around us. It makes my heart swell.”

Cauthorn and fellow farmers Phil and Dennis Becker worked the combines while another family friend, Richard Henke, and Cauthorn’s son, Andrew, hauled the corn away. Another neighbor, Paul Oligschlaeger, took care of Sweitzer’s 50 cows.

He said he did not have to think twice about helping his fellow farmer - “that’s just the way it works.”

Brenda Cauthorn pitched in by keeping everyone fed throughout the day.

Sweitzer said he was shocked by the “outpouring of love.”

“They have their own farms and their own jobs, and they took time out of their day. It was very much appreciated,” he said.

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