The agricultural community in Fulton County inducted four individuals in the Fulton County Agricultural Hall of Fame on Monday, Aug. 20, in Archbold.
The annual event is to recognize selected farmers or agribusiness leaders from Fulton County who have committed over 25 years or more of service to the agricultural industry in the county, state or region. Since 1983, there have been 144 honorees inducted into the Fulton County Agricultural Hall of Fame.
Inductees are selected by the Hall of Fame Committee in July after all applications have been reviewed. This year’s winners were recognized at Monday’s ceremony and will have a permanent plaque hung in their honor at the Merchants Building on the Fulton County Fairgrounds. However, for the 2018 fair, these four individuals’ plaques and biographies will be hung in the Hall of Fame Pavilion, just south of the Fulton County Junior Fair Building. Each honoree will receive an identical plaque for their home.
The following are the 2018 Fulton County Agricultural Hall of Fame inductees:
RICHARD L. GALLUP has contributed to Fulton County and its agricultural community in many ways. He is a self-taught man who grew up and has lived his entire life in a two-mile radius of Lyons. A graduate of Lyons High School, he believes in education and his many degrees that come from the school of experience.
Dick began his career as a teen raising cattle and the basic row crops: corn, soybeans, and wheat. Throughout the years, Dick has grown State Line Farms to over several thousand acres in Ohio and Michigan and a team of employees. He has grown processing tomatoes, seed wheat, seed beans, corn, and cabbage, all while raising hay for neighboring dairies and finishing market hogs. Dick’s experience has developed the skills required to plant when the soil is just right or irrigate crops before they become stressed.
His meticulous daily accounting and financial analysis has helped him jump at opportunities and transition from less profitable ventures. As an agricultural innovator, Dick was one of the first in the area to understand the benefits of tile and irrigation. He appreciates flexibility and independence. Dick saw early in his career the value of semis, grain-handling systems, greenhouses, maintenance shops, and technology such as global positioning systems (GPS).
He is a member of Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Assumption, where he has served on the finance committee. He is a calm, God-fearing family man, honest in his dealings, with family at the forefront. He believes there is a right way to conduct your life and run your business: Do unto others, and help those in need.
RICHARD MARTIN started farming while growing up on his family’s farm in Fayette. While attending Fayette High School, he was involved in the FFA program, where he received his State and American degrees. He took over the family farm, and he and his wife Linda started the dairy farm, Martinline, LLC. They raised three children and now enjoy their grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
Richard was one of the first producers in the area to incorporate no-till practices into his grain farming, around 1987. This sparked a relationship with the Fulton Soil and Water Conservation District, who he teamed up with to install waterways and filter strips where needed. The SWCD named Richard Cooperator of the Year.
He continues to be involved in the day-to-day operation of Martinline, LLC, and farms close to 500 acres in crop production. He has worked with local producers throughout the years, contracting feeder pigs. After the dairy cows sold in 1998, he contract-fed and raised beef calves for local producers.
Richard is involved in the Fulton County Farm Bureau and was active with the Fayette Christian Church of Disciples Church, the Pleasant View Cemetery Board, and The Fayette Lions Club. He was also a 4-H advisor for Fayette Favorites, and later the Dandy Dairyman for 20 years.
ED MILLER grew up being in 4-H and FFA, showing steers at the Fulton County Fair and Lugbill Livestock Show. He won champion showman at the fair and champion pen of five fat steers at the Lugbill livestock show. He was recipient of the Ohio FFA State Farmer Award in 1964.
Farming began for Ed by feeding steers and hauling livestock for his father’s trucking company. In 1970, Ed, along with his father and brother-in-law, began M.E. Miller Tire Company, specializing in agricultural tires including those hard’ to find tires for persons restoring antique farm equipment. Ed became president of the tire company in 1985 and continues in this role today.
He was an original member of the Fulton County Fair Foundation and served several years as its president. He has also served as chairperson of the fundraising committee for the Spangler Show Arena. He and his wife, Lila, have served as foster parents for several years. They also are serving their 10th year as co-chairpersons of the Grandstand Diner at the Fulton County Fair, benefiting community programs. Ed is a charter member of North Clinton Church, has served on several committees, and still enjoys being involved helping in numerous capacities.
DENNIS WYSE grew up on a grain and livestock farm on the south edge of Wauseon. In 1971, Dennis bought 30 acres to start farming and raising hogs. He earned his State FFA Degree his senior year of high school, which helped begin a productive farming career. He had 115-sow farrow-to-finish swine operation until 1992, when he started the Fraker and Wyse Construction partnership, which operated for 20 years. His farming operation has grown to over 1,000 acres today, in partnership with his son.
Dennis has been a member of the Fulton County Fair Board for eight years, and has served as president since 2013. As a fair board member, Dennis has tackled numerous projects; few, however, were more meaningful than the completion of the gospel building in 2015. He was construction leader for the project, coordinating many volunteer workers and construction teams. He donated many hours of labor to make the dream of having a permanent gospel building to use rather than a tent.
In the community, Dennis has served as York Township trustee, as well as vice president and president of the Fulton County Township Trustee Association. He was instrumental in bringing Life Flight to Fulton County, and arranged access to his grain bins for first responders to train for grain bin rescues. Additionally, Dennis has contributed to the lives of many youth as the 4-H advisor of the Farmers of Tomorrow, and by providing equipment for the Wauseon FFA to use on their school farm.
Dennis and his wife, Tina, continue to have in impact on the next generation of agriculturalists as they work with their three children and seven grandchildren in farming and 4-H/FFA projects.
For photos of this year’s event, and the Ag Hall of Fame application, visit www.fulton.osu.edu.