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N.Y. farmer killed in hay baler accident

The seat of his tractor detached, calling him to fall backward onto the ground,where he was drawn into the hay round baler

The Daily Star

ONEONTA, N.Y. — A well-known farmer and former town justice was killed in a farming accident Friday, Delaware County deputies said Tuesday.

Duane Merrill, 68, of Hamden, was fatally injured when he was drawn into a hay baler, a media release said.

Incident details, according to the release, which was made available upon request, was as follows:

On Friday afternoon, sheriff’s deputies and investigators and members of the Delhi Fire Department and Walton Emergency Squad responded to the area of 2152 Chambers Hollow Road in Hamden as a result of a 911 report of a possible farming accident.

Authorities determined that Merrill, a well-known Hamden area farmer and former town justice, was baling hay when the tractor’s seat detached from the tractor causing the seat and operator to fall backward onto the ground between the tractor and baler.

Merrill was subsequently drawn into the hay round baler and fatally injured, deputies said.

According to an obituary, Merrill and his wife, Peg, operated Hilldale Farms. He also served 18 years as Hamden justice, worked as a bus driver for Walton Central School and served on that school district’s Board of Education for 15 years, including five years as president.

Merrill was a founding member of the Walton chapter of Jaycees and an elder at the United Presbyterian Church in Walton, the obituary said. 


©2014 The Daily Star (Oneonta, N.Y.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service
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