He served on the Jones County School board and received calls from people all over the county regarding education issues. There was a party line for phone service for four farm households and three TV channels available by TV antenna. There were hail storms that wiped out wheat crops, farm accidents and record setting blizzards.The books provided both entertainment and education. Good fishing would bring out the seine which helped relocate fish to other dams. There were bullfrogs brought back from Missouri that decided western South Dakota was a good place to live. All the Cromwell kids learned to drive tractors before they drove cars.Don said that even if you didn’t know what you were doing it would probably work out okay if you just tried to do the right thing.
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Some of this was probably not legal but what the heck, statute of limitations has probably long passed. There were nephews who were sent to the farm for summer rehabilitation.
It was a pretty good life for everyone and seldom a dull moment.
The family farm was sold in the early 80’s and Don and Helen moved into Draper, taking on a gas station and cafe along I-90. The locals became the coffee crew who met up in the mornings and afternoons.
During this time, coffee shops and diners around the country were touting their “Rush Rooms”.
Don stated in interviews that he had a problem with anyone who would talk trash about women because it was good that women be strong independent people.