Madison County Farmer loses thousands to storm damage but is comforted by priceless friendship of the Amish

NEW MARKET,  Ala. (WHNT) – The storms that have beared down on North Alabama over the last week hit some areas very hard.   Such is the case at Ayers Farm in New Market.

The owner, Susan Ayers-Kelley was devastated to see the damage from June 5th, but it was something else that made her cry.

What seemed like a hopeless situation turned into a very good thing.

One week after the storms of June 5th, clear skies hung over Ayers Farm.
One could see them from inside the Ayers barn, since fierce winds ripped off the roof.

“When we opened the door, the whole top was just caved in,” said Ayers-Kelley.  “All the equipment was covered, everything.  It was awful.”

She couldn’t believe the damage to her home, barn and farm.

Her cotton crop was under water.

“There were trees down, there was damage to my home.  We couldn’t get in any door on the back of my home,” she recalled.

One week later, Ayers-Kelley is still trying to total up how much damage was done, suspecting it may hit $100,000.

And as devastating as that was, it was something else that made her cry.

“We’ve become very good friends and their just a part of my everyday life,” said Ayers-Kelley of the Amish people living in and around Ethridge, Tennessee.

They sell their produce at an auction house Ayers owns — Plowboy Produce Auction —  every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

Last week, she had to cancel the sale on Friday, but made it in the following Monday, and couldn’t believe what she saw.

“There was probably 25 to 30 Amish men standing there waiting on me to tell me that they were going to come and help me with the tragedy that I have here, which is a very big deal for them because they don’t ride in cars.”

Ayers rented two vans for them to make the trip.

Sure enough on Thursday morning — one week after the storms — her friends showed up at eight o’clock.

Ayers-Kelley estimates they did about two days of work in an hour and a half, hauling and piling up debris.

All they asked for in return was a good meal.

“They’ve come to me from 70 miles away, where my neighbors haven’t even stopped,” said Ayers-Kelley.

And while her cotton crop was unde rwater, she believes it’s not lost — that is, as long as the rain holds off long enough for it to dry out.



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