Fatal crash for Elmira dairy farmers on cross-Canada tractor trip

Henk and Bettina Schuurmans, farmers from Elmira, Ont. travelling across the country on a tractor to raise awareness about dairy farming, have been involved in a fatal collision north of Saskatoon, Sask.

Henk and Bettina Schuurmans in fatal collision north of Saskatoon, Sask.

Henk and Bettina Schuurmans pose on their cross Canada tour. (Gofundme: Canadian Dairy Industry )

Two farmers from Elmira, Ont. have been involved in a fatal road accident just outside of Saskatoon, Sask. while they were on a cross Canada trip to promote dairy farming. 

Henk and Bettina Shuurmans were driving across the country on a John Deere tractor decorated with a life-sized replica dairy cow to promote discussion about the importance of supply-management to family farms in Canada. 

The collision occurred just after 9 a.m. CT on Highway 16 when the couple's tractor was hit by a semi-trailer truck. 

Bettina was killed in the crash and Henk taken to hospital with severe injuries. 

The driver of the semi-trailer was not hurt.

RCMP said an initial investigation suggested both vehicles were going westbound on Highway 16 when the farm tractor was rear ended by the semi.

GoFundMe page set up

A GoFundMe page set up after the collision reads: "There will be expenses related to the accident and its aftermath, and lasting impact to their family."

Murray Sherk, a board member of the Dairy Farmers of Ontario, said people at the organization "were really shocked." 

"They were intentionally doing something to try to promote the industry in a unique way of driving the tractor across Canada," said Sherk. 

"Our sympathies definitely go out to the rest of the family." 

"They were sending pictures every day from various places where they visited and to end like this, is just terribly tragic," he said. 


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