Basin Electric director’s grandson loses leg, wrestles on

Don Applegate

Don Applegate, director.

Collin Applegate lost his leg in a farm accident in October. Just two months later, he was back on the wrestling mat at Riverside High School in Oakland, IA.

Collin is the grandson of Don Applegate, Basin Electric director since 1997, representing District 4, Northwest Iowa Power Cooperative (NIPCO).

The Omaha World-Herald featured Collin’s story in their Sunday paper, Jan. 15, 2012.

The story online contains pictures and video: Amputee goes to the mat for comeback

Here is an excerpt from the story written by Kevin White, staff writer at the World-Herald.

Oct. 8 was like most fall Saturdays on the Applegates’ 2,500-acre farm three miles west and one mile north of Oakland, a city of about 1,500 that is 30 miles east of Omaha. There was work to be done, and Collin was in the middle of it.

A few miles away, at a farm the family rents, Collin and a friend were hooking up a manure wagon to move it back home. Collin was between the tractor and the wagon when the tractor rolled back, crushing his lower left leg between the tractor hitch and the pump.

The boys immediately called for help on their cellphones. Collin’s friend used his lifeguard training, telling Collin to take off his shirt and wrap it around the leg to slow the bleeding. He reassured Collin and remained on the line with 911 while waiting for an ambulance. Read more.


  1. Kristen Gottschalk, Nebraska Rural Electric Association says:

    I read this story in the Omaha World Herald. Collin is an inspiring young man and we can all learn a lot from him in the way he responded to his accident. I expect him to be successful no matter what he endeavors. The actions of his friend in response to the emergency should also be commended.

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