Ohio Farmer, Known For ‘It Ain’t Much, But It’s Honest Work’ Meme, Dies In Tragic Accident

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A well-known Ohio farmer, who gained internet fame through a meme, has passed away, leaving behind a profound impact on the agricultural community in addition to his online legacy.

Dave Brandt, aged 76, was reportedly driving back to his Fairfield County farm from Champaign, Illinois, where he had collected red corn when his truck was involved in a crash. He was subsequently transported to Carle Foundation Hospital in Urbana by emergency crews.

Sadly, Brandt’s friend and colleague, Randall Reeder, told local media that he had passed away overnight on Saturday.

Reeder shared, “I received the call around 7 a.m. on Sunday morning.”

Pictured here on his Carroll, Ohio, farm in 2022, is soil health and cover cropping pioneer David Brandt, who passed away on May 21, 2023, from injuries sustained in a vehicular accident. (Understanding Ag photo by Joe Dickie.)

Apart from his local farming reputation, Brandt gained widespread recognition in internet culture due to a 2014 U.S. Department of Agriculture article that showcased his innovative farming techniques. Four years later, a Redditor stumbled upon a photo of Brandt and added the text “It ain’t much, but it’s honest work,” thus sparking a new meme format.

It’s unclear if Brandt actually said the phrase.

The image quickly spread across various social media platforms.

Brandt, a Vietnam War veteran who was awarded three Purple Hearts, delved into farming in the 1970s, embarking on a journey that would make him an influential figure in the agricultural community.

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