The deaths of a grandfather and his grandson this week have left a big hole in the town of Burstall.
Dennis Becker, 62, and his 14-year-old grandson, Layne Langridge, died Monday night in a farming accident. They were killed as grain was being loaded from a dual hopper semi-grain trailer, according to the RCMP.
“He was just a really, very kind, understanding man, all around,” said Eunice Cameron.
Cameron counted Becker as a mentor and a friend. She said he was hugely involved with the Lions Club, serving as district governor, council chair for the multi-district, and as Saskatchewan’s director for the Lions Foundation of Canada Dog Guides, and he organized the Lions’ rally every year at Craik.
“We have lost an absolute …” said Cameron before pausing for a moment.”We are going to have a very hard time replacing Dennis in Lions.”
She said volunteering a service work was a family affair, including Becker’s wife and father.
“They’re just a whole family of very dedicated Lions, do a lot of service work around Burstall, and around Saskatchewan, and around our multi-district.”
Cameron said all the Lions are wishing Becker’s family the best as they deal with their loss.
Along with Becker, Cameron said she also knew the grandson, Langridge, who was always around when she went over there.
“I know that the grandson was the apple of their eye … Both Barb and Dennis adored him … he was just (an) integral part of their whole life.”
Cameron called the whole situation a “very sad event”.
Farmer recalls close call during childhood accident
Farming accidents can happen to anyone, according to Lawrence Yakelashek who almost lost his life in a similar incident as a teenager.
Yakelashek said they were harvesting near Dauphin, Man. and he jumped into the back of a grain cart because grain was getting hung up. He slipped and landed at the bottom of the shoot, where grain was pouring down on top of him.
“If it wasn’t for my uncle jumping in the cart, who knows what would have happened?” he recalled.
“You are like, ‘wow.’ This happened so fast that you never thought you were going to slip and fall and this was going to happen. It was just remarkable. It was just panic.”
Yakelashek said farmers have a different mentality during quick-paced harvest and accidents are prone to happen.
“It’s going to rain tomorrow so it would be nice to get this field off. We can go a little harder, a little faster. You are not thinking that you are the person that could end up having an accident,” he said, adding his heart goes out to the family affected near Burstall.
“There is probably close calls every single day but we never really hear about those close calls. That changed everything on our farm. We just kind of said, ‘OK, let’s just slow down a little bit and let’s be careful,’” he said.
-with files from CKOM’s Karin Yeske.