This is much more than tractor tale
This is way more than a tale about a tractor that will do so much good in one of the poorest parts of the world.
This is a story about friendship — one born at a Christian music concert five years ago — and ultimately, it’s a story about the legacy of a man who his family and friends will tell you had the biggest and most giving heart.
It will end — if that’s the word one wants to use — sometime this summer when a John Deere tractor will arrive in Haiti and be put in the trusty hands of Jackson Covdo, and we’re pretty sure somewhere in Heaven, Jerry Bodensteiner will be smiling.
Not so much because it will be part of the late New Hampton man’s legacy, but because it will help those that want to help themselves.
Bodensteiner died unexpectedly on July 28, 2020, and he was a man of many talents. He was, however, a farmer at heart. He loved the land, and he appreciated the bounty it produced. And now, his memory — carried on by his sister, Kay Shindelar, and a charity near and dear to both her and her husband, Alan’s, heart called CLIMB for Haiti — will help Haitians who don’t necessarily want a handout but need the tools to carry their country out of poverty.
In one way, this story begins back in Waterloo back in December 2015. The Shindelars attended a concert put on by Christian singer Mark Schultz, and during an intermission, they were telling some friends about their trips to Haiti.
It happened that Covdo, a University of Northern Iowa, walked by at just the right time.
“Did you say Haiti,” he asked. “I’m from Haiti.”
Little did the Shindelars and the young Haitian student realize it at the time, but a deep and enduring friendship was born.
-The rest of the story may be found in the April 20 Tribune.