By Patrick Solon, Streator, Illinois
The historic 2012 drought that wilted the corn and soybean fields of Illinois and other Midwest states was one of the costliest events to hit rural America in decades.
As the nightly news reported, losses on farms in large swaths of the Midwest were staggering, with some farmers having such low yields that harvesting was a waste of time.
I feel I live in an oasis. The drought and heat wave that crippled farmers in neighboring counties and nearby states somehow spared my farm and a few others here in north central Illinois. I don’t know if it’s where the farm is located, the soil it sits on or just the luck of the draw in getting a few rain showers here and there, but somehow, I was spared.
This makes me feel lucky, on one hand, since I did not face the dread of losing my crops, but guilty on the other hand because so many other farmers did.
In past years, a disaster on this level would have triggered a massive, ad hoc disaster…