• Last modified 418 days ago (April 6, 2023)


Love of farming is winning bid in life's auction

Staff writer

It’s no wonder Lyle Leppke loves doing farm and farm equipment auctions, farm appraisals, and talking with farm people.

He’s a fourth generation Marion County farmer who operates his own farm raising cattle, wheat, corn, soybean, hay, and milo on close to 1,000 acres south of Marion.

He grew up on his parents’ farm, then bought his own land in 1985.

Leppke started in the auction business in 1984 while he was an agriculture student at Kansas State University.

He would go to the sale barn at Herington and auction goats.

Between appraisals and auctions, there’s no portion of the county Leppke hasn’t seen.

“”I would say there are very few roads I haven’t driven down and very little land I don’t know something about,” Leppke said.

It’s hard for Leppke to say whether he loves the agricultural life or the auction life better.

Although he started early in life working on his father’s farm, he accompanied his father to auctions where his father bought cattle for customers.

“I take care of other people first,” Leppke said.

Sometimes the cattle don’t get fed until he comes home after an auction.

Leppke said the best thing about his auction business is the connection with his customers and neighbors.

“When I go sit down at a table for breakfast or lunch, I can look around and see people I know and sit down and talk to them,” he said.

When he loses that connection with people, he might as well stop, he said.

Despite Leppke’s love of agriculture, his sons haven’t followed his footsteps.

“I probably didn’t do a good enough job of taking them out on the tractor,” he said. “My boys, they saw the hours and the work.”

Last modified April 6, 2023