In honor of National Farmers Day, Brantley Gilbert gave tractors to five military veterans. The country singer partnered with Kubota Tractor Corporation and the Farmer Veteran Coalition to make the gifts happen.
The 2020 “Geared to Give” program recognizes military veterans who continue to serve their community through farming. As a result, Gilbert invited recipients of the gift to his farm in Alabama. The organizations held a ceremony for the veterans there, and Gilbert also performed a private concert in their honor.
“We wouldn’t have the abundance or variety of food we have today without our nation’s farmers,” Gilbert said in a press release. “I’m honored to be able to share in this effort with Kubota and FVC. And to pay tribute to all our active military and especially to these five veterans who have served our country. Once in the armed forces, and who continue serving their communities today through farming.”
Kubota Tractor was excited to partner with Gilbert to help veteran farmers. Alex Woods, Kubota senior vice president of sales operations, supply chain and parts, spoke of the partnership.
“It truly is the American dream for many – and certainly those returning or starting a new career in farming – to become a self-sufficient farmer, with the right mix of equipment, drive and determination to make tending to the land your life’s work,” Woods said in the press release. “Kubota is proud to work with FVC and with Brantley and his team to recognize the 2020 recipients and help us power and empower them with the right equipment to help them achieve their dreams.”
Brantley Gilbert met with military recipients of the award.
Two of the recipients joined Gilbert and Kubota Tractor in Alabama for the ceremony. Kara Rutter, one of the recipients, recently retired from the Army. Since leaving the military, she created Project Victory Gardens with her husband in South Carolina. The organization encourages veterans to become farmers. Meanwhile, Josh Nelson, of West Virginia, said he was inspired to be a farmer while serving his country overseas.
“Since 2017, we’ve been at it building our farm and our ranch and running a fence line. And really trying to contribute to the national food security and providing for our local community,” Nelson said.
Gilbert spoke with three of the recipients, who couldn’t make the ceremony, via video chat. The recipients were Bodhi Anderson of Hawaii, Andrew Eldelen of Texas and Cody Miller of Iowa. Anderson started a grass roots farming effort with his wife that feeds 100 families a month. Edlelen, a Marine veteran, is a second generation farmer. Meanwhile, Miller has raised awareness regarding post-traumatic stress disorder.
“Helping veterans achieve self-sufficiency in farming communities across the country is one of the greatest joys of our work,” said Jeanette Lombardo, executive director of FVC. “We’re extremely grateful to continue working alongside Kubota to deliver the right mix of much-needed equipment to take our veterans’ farms to the next level; it’s truly the greatest gift, particularly for farmers just starting out.”
Gilbert previously supported local farmers at his concerts.
Gilbert has long been a supporter of local farmers. He partnered with the FVC to cater a portion of his concert venues with locally sourced produce during his 2020 Fire’t Up Tour. As part of the partnership, local farmers were invited to share their stories and dine with the tour. Gilbert also met with the farmers and invited them to stay for the concert.
The country singer also partnered with Musically Fed to distribute excess food from the events to people in need.
Gilbert recently released his newest album Fire & Brimstone (Deluxe Edition) on Oct. 2.