Luke Garrabrant, owner and operator of L. Garrabrant Farms is the 3rd confirmable generation to farm in Johnstown. Luke grew up on his Mom (Lori) and Dad’s (Tom) farm. Luke attended grade school at Northridge and his junior and senior year he attended C-Tec where he studied welding and sheet metal fabrication. Upon graduation in 2014, Luke attended The Ohio State University ATI where he would graduate in 2016 with an associate’s degree in Crop Production.
Growing up, Luke was heavily involved in the family farm and 4-H. Around age 7 he began to operate equipment after completing years of buddy seat training. In 4-H, Luke showed Dairy Beef Feeders at The Hartford Independent Fair in Croton. He would purchase the calves in February when they were only a couple days old, bottle feed them twice a day- before and after school and raise them until they were between 500 and 600 pounds at fair time.
Luke’s farming career officially launched in 2010 at the young age of 13 when he rented 20 acres of farmland from his Grandma Kennedy and planted his first crop of soybeans as well as purchased 22 Holstein bottle calves that he would eventually fatten/finish and sell. As time progressed, Luke would continue to grow his own land base and in 2018 purchase the Goldsberry Homestead and a 66 acre farm.
Throughout high school, college and until 2019, Luke was employed by his Dad, Tom, working full time on his farm. In the latter years, Luke transitioned into being a part of business decisions related to equipment purchases, crop planning, sourcing of crop inputs and other managerial tasks.
In 2019, Luke would step away from his role at his dad’s farm to launch Garrabrant Farm Services, LLC; a custom services provider specializing in the hauling and spreading of chicken litter, servicing a 5 county area at its peak. The business was founded during a time of need for a local egg farm needing relief for their manure storage buildings. This would be a short-term endeavor and the business would go on to transform in mid-2020 to begin offering custom spray application. During that time, Luke would also continue to grow his farming operation and began acquiring his own line-up of farm equipment.
In 2021 Luke would marry his wife, Paige. Together they have a daughter named Gracen, with plans to grow their family in the coming years, lord willing. Also together they operate L. Garrabrant Farms.
Today, L. Garrabrant Farms operates from the original Goldsberry family homestead. The farm owns and leases land in a 3 county area: Licking, Knox and Delaware and owns/operates/maintains the farm’s own complete line of farm equipment utilizing many modern technologies.
Paige Garrabrant, wife of Luke Garrabrant grew up in Galion, OH. She attended Renchville Elementary and Galion Middle/Senior High. Paige was very involved in extracurriculars such as Math & Science Club, Team Green, and SADD. Upon graduation in 2012, she moved to Hanover, Indiana to attend college at Hanover College. Originally she intended to major in Biochemistry, but soon found Biology was not her forte. She would graduate in 2016 with a double major in Chemistry and Geology with a minor in Environmental Studies.
Soon after graduation Paige found herself working for a large egg producer as an Environmental Compliance Specialist. Early on she learned the ropes and found that regardless of your degree you are never too good to do difficult and dirty manual labor. Much of her time in this role was filled with climbing manure piles, maintaining and operating center pivot irrigation systems and completing barn inspections.
After a few years in this role, the company promoted her to the Environmental Compliance Manager. Here she took more of a management role but still continued to do as much boots on the ground work as possible. At work, a mutual friend of she and Luke's attempted to connect the two. He saw two young, hardworking people and thought they had to know each other. From there the relationship began to blossom. By the end of 2019 they were engaged.
In early 2020 Paige decided to embark on a Master's of Science in Environmental Engineering from the University of Oklahoma. About halfway through the program life threw a curve ball, like it usually does, Paige and Luke found out they were expecting a little girl in August of 2020. Miss. Gracen Rose Garrabrant was born on August 14, 2020 and that totally changed their lives; now they had a tangible reason to really strive for success. Paige wrapped up her graduate program and graduated in late 2020 with a 3.78 GPA. She also obtained her OEPA Wastewater and Drinking water licenses through her studies.
By Summer of 2021 Paige had found herself at a cross roads. Her work was very demanding and pulling a lot of time away from her family, especially her newborn. She was given the opportunity to work for The Ohio University as a Water Quality Research Specialist. This transition opened the door for not only much more family time but the ability to help on the farm, more than just preparing field meals. Now that she wasn't required to work weekends or extended hours she began learning the ropes from Luke, of course with their daughter by their side.
In September 2021, Luke and Paige married, and are now continuing to grow the farm. Paige is settling in to her new career and loving being a momma and a part time farmer. She also is pursuing her CCA to help further not only her career but her expertise on the family farm.
Gracen Garrabrant, daughter of Luke and Paige was born on August, 14th, 2020. Soon after her birth she was introduced to her first tractor and rode along while her daddy worked ground that would be seeded to hay. Of course, like most new babies she really enjoyed the vibrations and noises of a tractor ride.
At about eight weeks, Paige had to return to work. Harvest was quickly approaching as well. So as expected, Miss Gracen tagged along for many combine rides that fall. Much of her time spent in the cab was occupied by naps and short breaks for a bottle of milk or a fresh diaper.
As winter came, she found herself learning another side of the farm, manure hauling and stockpiling. As smelly of a job as that can be, she didn't mind and would tag right along in the loader or the semi.
In the spring she welcomed the sight of her new calves being born, flowers blooming and planters in the field. She loved watching from the back window of the cab as the drill or planter was filled.
The second summer was very busy for her. The farm had a lot of hay to make so she spent many days mowing and baling with her dad and raking and tedding with her mom. The warm weather and pretty sunsets were her favorite. She would even cheer them along from her stroller as they unloaded and stacked hay in the barn. She even got to ride in the combine with her Grandpa for wheat harvest. At the close of the summer Gracen was the flower girl for her parents wedding and certainly the focus of attention.
On to harvest of 2021, Gracen spent more time in the combine with dad or grain cart with mom. She even rode along to take some loads of corn to the mill. Like most others, her snacks for the day were usually gone by 9am.
Gracen is learning something new almost every day, it seems. Her mom and dad are sure that she will out operate them in a couple years and no doubt outsmart them. Regardless of what career path she chooses in life, we hope she grows to love and appreciate farming and agriculture no matter where life takes her.