Farming Community Rallies Behind Killed Parsonsburg Man - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Farming Community Rallies Behind Killed Parsonsburg Man

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Dozens came together to help the family of Michael Griffin (Source: Joshua Wharton) Dozens came together to help the family of Michael Griffin (Source: Joshua Wharton)
Many of those that helped didn't even know the deceased. (Source: Joshua Wharton) Many of those that helped didn't even know the deceased. (Source: Joshua Wharton)

LAUREL, Del. - The farming community in western Sussex County came together Sunday afternoon, just two days after a Parsonsburg, Md. farmer lost his life on a Laurel, Del. farm. It was on Friday that 61-year-old Michael Griffin was working on a "Bail Bandit," when he got caught, pulled inside, and killed. 

"He was definitely a gentleman farmer," said Robert Smith, a close friend. "He's the kind of person where there aren't many of them left. He would give you the shirt off his back, if you needed a hand. He was there." 

Griffin died while working on Smith's field. According to police, the Griffin encountered an error with the Bale Bandit and called his 27-year-old son to help fix the problem.  After clearing bales from the machine, his son told his father that he was going to activate the machine to reset it.  As the son walked to the tractor to do this, his father took a seat on a nearby bale of straw.  When the son entered the tractor and activated the machine, he heard a scream and turned to see his father trapped inside the Bale Bandit. 

Community Coming Together:

Griffin's death left more than just aching hearts. He also left a lot of work to do, since he ran a flourishing business baling more than 500 acres per year across Sussex County. With his death, Griffin's family would have lost a lot of income, and so the farming community decided to chip in. 

"We decided we were going to do it for them," said Jessica Smith. "And then everybody from every direction wanted to bale. They wanted to help. They wanted to do this." 

All in all, Smith said more than 100 people volunteered to help bale the Smith property, and in the end, they completed approximately 50 acres.

"All farmers came together for one farmer yesterday," Jessica said. "It's great. None of us are family, but when you farm, everyone's a family. It's you know one person is in need and it's kind of like a big family. There all willing to help."

The crew will be back out next Sunday to bale more of the properties. If you would like to help, you can contact Joshua Wharton, from the Good Ole Boys Foundation at jwharton80@gmail.com

"He would just have a big smile on his face," said Robert. "One-hundred-percent. I can see him right now just looking down just smiling."

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