Cotton Farmer Battling Cancer Couldn’t Harvest His Crop. So Neighbors Did It For Him

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Texans pride themselves on being friendly and neighborly, and one group of Texans proved recently that it’s not just talk. They put their good intentions into action.

KCBD reports that Greg Bishop, a man who lives near Lubbock, Texas, was diagnosed with leukemia in September. The deadly disease wasted no time in ravaging the man. A cotton farmer, Bishop became so ill and weak from chemo that he couldn’t even harvest his cotton crop this year. Furthermore, his immune system had weakened so much that he had to remain indoors, Inside Edition reports. But never mind that. His friends, neighbors and his entire community immediately stepped up to make sure it got done.

Bringing in millions of dollars worth of equipment, 35-40 farmers made short work of getting Bishop’s cotton harvested. They brought in about 20 cotton strippers and all of the rest of the equipment needed to get the job done.

The manager of the Floydada Co-Op Gins said that so many people wanted to help that they had to turn people away.

“We had a meeting about a week ago today and discussed it. We had about 35-40 farmers come in to talk to us and see what they could do. Some of it was done last week, but the majority of it was done today. We got a bunch of farmers together to go out and strip Greg Bishop’s cotton. We had 20 machines, all from different farmers, got together and harvested his cotton,” Bob Hendricks said on Monday.

And this wasn’t a small job. Bishop grows a lot of cotton. Seriously, a LOT of cotton. The man who originally had the idea to help was Robert Nixon, who was overwhelmed by the amount of support showed by a community to a friend in need. These farmers harvested 300-400 acres of cotton in five hours.

“We probably had anywhere from 300 to 400 acres and we started around 10 o’clock this morning and a little before 3 we were done. I mean we had that many people,” Nixon said.

Local companies contributed food, fuel, and service trucks. One local chemical business even brought in 75 hamburgers to feed all the people working, CNN reports. It was truly a community effort to help a friend and neighbor. Another friend and former college roommate of Bishop, Dave Carthel, said that he’s never been a part of something like this before, but that they were happy to be able to help.

“We were all glad to do it for him. He’s got a rough road ahead and he’s got a lot more worries down the road than just getting his crop in so we were all just real glad to do it and I was glad to be a part of it,” Carthel said.

Hendricks pointed out that you can’t wait for proud people to ask for help. Sometimes you just have to be proactive.

“He would not have asked anyone for help, but he would have been the first one out if somebody else was sick,” Hendricks said.

The end result was about 1,200 bales of processed cotton. Its value is about $420,000, money that will go a long way for Mr. Bishop as he fights the deadly disease of leukemia.

This time of year, it’s heartwarming to see neighbors showing what it really means to be a neighbor. Bishop is set to go to Baylor Medical in Dallas for 100 days. He’ll be getting a bone marrow transplant.