WASHBURN, N.D. _ Midway through calving, Glenda Scholl and her two children were trying to move cows with calves to another pasture on their farm outside Washburn when Alan Scholl was trampled by a cow.
"She just turned on him," Glenda Scholl said. "Typically she wasn't a mean cow."
Alan Scholl ended up with a broken jaw, shoulder and ribs.
"It could have been worse," Glenda Scholl said.
Glenda Scholl and her daughter, Sara Scholl, were able to finish calving season, but Alan Scholl usually did the planting. Glenda Scholl said she didn't know what she would have done if Farm Rescue hadn't accepted her application for help.
Glenda Scholl's husband died 2 1/2 years ago, but she and her two children have continued farming and ranching.
Chad Berg faced a similar problem on his farm in Underwood. He was walking among his cows before dark. He said he turned away from one of the cows and was walking in the other direction when she came running full bore after him. She head butted him continuously in the hip until he was pushed up against a bale feeder.
Berg said he tried to get up but when he looked back, his leg was broken and lying at angle. He managed to secure his leg with a belt and a sweatshirt and drag himself 20 feet before her calf came over and she came at him again.
"She pretty much treated me like a rag doll" throwing him into the air, he said.
Berg suffered six fractures and had to have a rod placed in his leg from his knee to his hip. He said he was nearly hypothermic when he was found. He spent seven days in hospital and won't be able to walk for three months.
Berg's dad recently underwent an ankle replacement and has been off his feet. The two of them are usually the only ones working full time on the farm. Friends and neighbors have helped with the cows but now that planting has begun neither Berg nor his father can run the clutch, much less climb up in the tractor.
"If it wasn't for Farm Rescue, instead of being one of the first out there we'd be one of the last," Berg said.
Glenda Scholl said Farm Rescue's help was a big relief for her.
"It's unreal how they're giving up their time to come do this," she said.
The "Weaver Clan" — Randy, Bill and Dick — came from Kentucky and Pennsylvania for 10 days to help. This is their sixth year as volunteers.
"When people are down, someone needs to pick them up," said Bill Weaver, about why he and his brother and nephew choose to come back year after year.
Bill Weaver said they enjoy meeting the farm families, learning their stories and all about their farms.
"These people go way back," he said. Oftentimes, Farm Rescue is the only non-family to plant on the farms.
Steve Nelson of Florida has been volunteering for four years. He said he heard about the program while hunting with his wife on a friend's farm in Harvey.
"It's really been rewarding," he said.
The Weavers and Nelson are among Farm Rescue's 100 core volunteers. Farm Rescue volunteers come from 15 different states, Gross said.
"They're all ages, from all walks of life," he said.
Farm Rescue is planting at 30 farms this spring and harvesting at 15 in the fall. The organization is still accepting harvest applications. The Jamestown-based organization helps farmers in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Montana.
Farm Rescue is in its seventh year and has helped about 215 families to date.