Local farmer hurt in crash

A prominent southwest Bartholomew County farmer is hospitalized in Indianapolis recovering from injuries sustained during a weekend accident.

Elmer J. Whipker Jr., 74, who resides on County Road 400W, sustained neck, back and internal injuries during a one-vehicle accident Saturday afternoon near Ogilville, said his granddaughter, Halie Brumley.

Whipker was driving his truck on County Road 450S when his vehicle drifted off the north side of the road way, according to a report filed with the Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department.

Although the report states Whipker did not remember what happened, a family spokesman said it appears the pickup truck first struck a culvert and flipped over before coming to rest on its roof.

After emergency medical technicians arrived, Whipker was transported to Indiana University Health Methodist Hospital in Indianapolis, the report states.

A hospital spokesperson said Whipker’s condition on Tuesday was good. Brumley said a lengthy period of both hospitalization and recovery is anticipated.

From being a district director for the Future Farmers of America in the early 1960s to receiving the 2011 Rural Service Award, Whipker has long been a well-known figure in Bartholomew County agriculture.

He and his late wife, Kristina — who died in 2011 — were one of three families credited with founding the Columbus East Boosters Club.

The couple also owned gift shops in Columbus and Nashville.

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Mark Webber is a reporter for The Republic. He can be reached at mwebber@therepublic.com or 812-379-5636.