Town & Country
Name: James (Jamie) Marion
In Town: "Off the farm, I do all kinds of dirt work. I build roads, ponds, pads, water lines. I work with bull dozers, backhoes, track hoes and other heavy equipment. I own my own business… or it owns me. It's been around 11 years since I went out on my own."
In the Country: "I've got beef cattle and feeders on land in Crawford County. I've got somewhere around 100 head of mommas and 100 head of feeders, and we put up hay for other people and ourselves. Last year we put up around 1,300 to 1,500 round bales. Mike Murphey, who's (also) from Natural Dam, helps me. Without his help I'd never be able to do what I do."
Family: Wife: Christina and two kids — Cole, 6 years old and McKenzie, 4 years old.
How do you balance your company and your farm?
"I've got a buddy of mine, (Mike), who helps me with the hay and cattle. I do my job stuff in the mornings and check cattle in the evenings. In the summertime I try to sneak off sometime after lunch or so, to go get in the hay."
Describe your feeding operation.
"This is a new venture we've been wanting to try for some time. We have a creep feeder out for them 24/7 and keep hay in front of them. They're checked three to four times a day and are given free choice feed or hay. We'll keep them until the first of September. Then we'll try to sell them right off the place, either straight to a feedlot or to an order buyer. We're also in the process of buying another 100 head."
What's your biggest challenge?
"Buying more cattle. I've had a goal of having 200+ mommas before I'm 40 years old. I've had that goal since I was about 25. I always thought by 40 I should be sitting pretty good, with a family, and I should have a little security going – liquid assets. This is my passion. I love it. I hope my kids follow me. I've been around cattle all my life. In fact, that's all I would do if I didn't have to depend on my living from it."
By OFN Staff