Idea of the Month: Sturdy three-point boom
Terry L. Fritts wanted a device that would help him move items around his Illinois farm and shop. A welder for 48 years, Fritts built a three-point boom that extends 15 feet. To make it easy to extend and retract, he incorporated steel rollers for the tube and affixed pin anchors every 12 inches to allow 9- to 15-foot extendability. In addition, he welded brackets on the three legs, so they could be easily removed when storing the boom and hitch frame.
Fritts passed away June 30, 2021. Today, his grandson, Dakota McGowen, helps maintain the equipment and farm as time allows.
One of McGowen’s fondest memories of his grandfather was getting to see the three-point boom in action. “As a boy, I remember being with my grandpa when he cut down a large tree,” he recalls. “He attached the boom to the tree before cutting it down. Once cut, he lowered the tree to the ground, cut it up, and used the boom to haul the sections away.
“Grandpa was extremely intelligent,” McGowen continues. “Everything he did was slow and methodical but always top-shelf with quality and stability.”
Terry L. Fritts
Hobbies: Fritts loved hunting, fishing, target shooting, gardening, and being a jack-of-all-trades.
Heritage: A welder for 48 years, Fritts received a degree in tool and die manufacturing technology from Southern Illinois University. He was also an Army veteran and a committed deacon at his church.
Family: Fritts and his wife, Norma Jean, were married almost 53 years and had two daughters, Terra McGowen and Trisha Wright, as well as several grandchildren and great-grandchildren.
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