Ticket To Ride
Helping a good cause nets a new tractor for this farmer.
By Jason Jenkins | Photos By Jason Jenkins
Terry Blankenship never expected to hear his name called. Yet there he sat at the 2017 Dairy Farmers of America annual meeting banquet, when the emcee announced him as the winner of a brand-new Massey Ferguson® 4707 Global Series tractor. Provided by AGCO® and DFA, the four-wheel utility tractor, equipped with an MF931X loader, was the grand prize in a raffle supporting DFA Cares, the dairy cooperative’s philanthropic foundation.
“I just sat there, because I really couldn’t believe they had called my name,” remembers the dairyman from Marshfield, Missouri, who had purchased 20 of the nearly 17,000 raffle tickets sold. “When it finally soaked in, all I could do was smile.”
The Blankenship family operates a 400-acre beef and dairy operation that Terry’s grandparents started in 1958. His 20-year-old son, Quinton, and his two grandsons, Brody and Brantley, represent the fourth and fifth generations on the farm. The MF4707 is their first brand-new tractor since his father, Ronald, bought one in 1975. “We’ve had it over a year now, and I absolutely love it,” Blankenship says. “With 70 HP, it has plenty of power, yet it’s small enough to be really versatile. When I’m working hay, that push-button shuttle gear is the best.”
John Hallett, AGCO national accounts manager, says the MF4707 was the second tractor the company had donated for the DFA Cares’ fundraiser since 2013.
Established in 2005, DFA Cares donates dairy products and monetary contributions to those in need. The organization also awards scholarships to students pursuing dairy-related careers. For example, when hurricanes Harvey and Irma struck Texas and Florida in 2017, DFA Cares responded with more than $50,000 in product donations to hurricane victims. In 2018, the foundation also awarded $57,000 in scholarships to 45 students pursuing dairy-industry careers.
When Blankenship returned to Kansas City for DFA’s 20th annual meeting this past spring, he bought his customary $100 in raffle tickets. While he wasn’t expecting lightning to strike twice, he says he believes in the DFA Cares mission. “I’m tickled to support the cause,” he says. “They do so much good while supporting young people interested in dairy.”
Learn more about the DFA Cares Foundation at www.dfamilk.com/our-cooperative/dfa-cares.