From the Farm: Memorial tractor ride

Agriculture

MOUNT PULASKI, Ill. (WCIA) – Dozens of farmers from Mount Pulaski took part in a tractor ride on Saturday to remember Caleb Coogan and raise money for the scholarship in his name.

Coogan was 12 years old when he lost his life in an ATV accident on Sept. 6, 2017. He was a fan of tractors, so that’s how the community chose to remember him.

“He enjoyed toy tractors, collected toy tractors,” said ride participant Mitchell Hinds. “It’s something he always enjoyed, so it’s a way of honoring and remembering him.

About 75 tractors, old and new, joined a myriad of other vehicles on Saturday for the fourth annual fund-raising ride, which was organized by Coogan’s friend Don Maxheimer.

“He and I became friends when he was probably 8 and until his passing at age 12. We spent a lot of time together,” Maxheimer said. “It all started over collecting Case garden tractors. He and I were looking and hunting for various tractors, and he just followed my interests and got very involved himself, and from time to time we shared some parts and he restored some.”

Coogan was also a member of the local tractor club, and Maxheimer remembers how quickly Coogan was accepted by the rest of the club.

“When I brought Caleb and he rattled off his list of 9 tractors, he also got adopted by about 85 or 90 grandpas at the same time,” Maxheimer said.

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