If you’ve been a follower of this website/blog for very long, you may have been wondering why there was no mention made of Ross over the past several months. Well, Ross has been battling some significant health issues since the 2021 harvest finished. On Thursday, July 21, 2022, Ross passed away. His final two months were spent in the hospital. We miss him immensely, but we recognize that in passing, he will suffer no more. We take comfort in that he was a believer in Christ, and that he is experiencing his reward now in the presence of God.
He was a very major leader for this farm business. He started farming with our dad Lowell when he was a little kid. Later, he went into partnership with dad. When the farm was incorporated in 1977, Ross became a key leader in the farm corporation, moving from VP to President at dad’s passing in 1999.
Ross was good at many things. He was our best mechanic; there seemed to be no implement or machine that he could not fix. He was a very skilled operator too. His work planting corn or harvesting a crop was second to none. Above all that, he was generally quite amicable. Although he could be stern when the situation required, his disposition was normally easy-going. He was no stranger to hard work all his days.
Ross was an excellent ‘field general’, directing the day’s activities. He was a thoughtful and successful marketer of the farm’s grain. He had good relationships with each of the buyers, and he made completely informed decisions about marketing. He relied on his partners to keep the financial records, or make decisions about crop care chemicals. He made the seed corn selections, but sought the input of his partners in such matters. He always kept an eye to the future, thinking and planning of future advances and successes.
Farming as his partner was a pleasure. He allowed me and others to ‘be themselves’. As partners, we decentralized our management style, allowing each person to lead to their strengths. He and I discussed most major decisions like buying a farm or major piece of equipment. But on routine matters, each person performed their role without criticism or second-guessing. It seemed to work well for us over the years.
I’m going to miss my big brother. I’m going to miss my farm business partner. But we will carry on the traditions left to us by Ross and our mom and dad. We will strive to keep Carnahan & Sons a successful farm. We will treasure the memories we have of Ross, and keep striving to make him proud of what we are doing.
Thank you, Ross, for all you meant to all of us.