Havre Daily News
A local farmer who died Memorial Day in a tractor accident will be remembered Friday at a funeral service. Dean Russell Clayborn, 59, died Monday afternoon after his tractor rolled down a steep coulee.
Clayborn was discovered soon afterward by neighbors on their way to the Clayborn residence, friend and neighbor Ed Nystrom said.
"Apparently Mr. Clayborn got too close to the edge of a coulee and the load shifted on his tractor, sending it over the coulee," Hill County Sheriff Greg Szudera said today. The Sheriff's Office received a call at 3:23 p.m. and sent an ambulance to the scene. Clayborn was taken to Northern Montana Hospital, where he died Monday, Szudera said.
The tractor had rolled four or five times, and rolled over Clayborn, Szudera said.
Nystrom said he knew the tractor that Clayborn was using and described it as an old model that can be tricky to operate. A bucket in front was probably lifted too high, making it unstable, he said.
"He held on for as long as he could," Nystrom said. "The old bugger, he started crawling up the hill and bleeding all the way."
Szudera said the bucket in front was full of dirt and was raised higher than it probably should have been, making it unstable.
Nystrom remembers his neighbor and former classmate for his grit and zeal. He described Clayborn as "very talkative" and friendly.
Clayborn loved horses and was a good mechanic, Nystrom said. A former oil field worker, Clayborn also worked at Hi-Line Dodge and Heltne's Service Station as a mechanic and at Buttrey's.
A service will be held at 11 a.m. Friday at Holland & Bonine funeral chapel followed by a lunch at the Vets Club.