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Almond farmer dies following mowing accident

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POSTED July 31, 2013 1:59 a.m.

An almond farmer died Monday night after being run over by his tractor, according to San Joaquin County Sheriff’s spokesman Les Garcia.

Joseph Carl Wagner, 53, was pronounced dead at Doctors Hospital of Manteca shortly after 11 p.m., Garcia said.

Family members said Wagner was working late, wrapping up his chores on his 120-acre farm in preparation for an upcoming out-of-town vacation. He was reportedly knocked to the ground by a tree branch, where he was caught underneath in his tractor. He was found by a farm worker who called 9-1-1.

Longtime friend and farmer Dale Kuil spoke highly of Wagner, noting he was well-liked and will be missed.  Kuil added that Wagner was a respected member of the Ripon Swiss Club, where he had participated in club wrestling for many years.

A funeral mass has tentatively been set for Aug. 7 at St. Patrick’s Catholic Church on Highway 120 at Carrolton Avenue in Ripon. The family asks that those interested in attending please confirm the date and time with family and friends, or by contacting the Ripon Swiss Club.

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