JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. — When Jim McCann and his wife Linda decided to move their cattle operation to Missouri, it wasn’t the family’s first time finding a new place to call home. McCann, a fifth generation cattle farmer, grew up raising cattle in Texas before moving to Arizona, and eventually Missouri.
“We had cattle as I was growing up in Texas,” said McCann. “Then I got married and my wife and I decided we were going to the mountains in Arizona and away we went. I guess I didn’t know anything else, so we were involved in the cattle industry.”
It wasn’t until two of their children ended up in Missouri that McCann considered a move to the Midwest. He spent the next five years researching land throughout Missouri, and finally decided southwest Missouri was the place they would settle as a family.
In addition to ensuring his kids are involved in the farm, McCann is dedicated to serving God by raising and caring for his cattle.
“We call our outfit Shining Cross Cattle Company, with Shining Cross being our registered brand,” said McCann. “The Lord has made sure we were successful in what we do. I can’t take the credit for doing it, I just did what the Lord told me to do.”
Their two Angus cattle farms stretch across more than 300 acres in the area around Miller, Missouri. With their daughter and two sons involved with the operation, McCann has found a seamless way of keeping track of everyone.
“We have a family meeting every three weeks,” said McCann. “The whole family gets together and we compare our plans on what we’re going to do and where everybody is going to be. It’s a planning meeting for the next three or four weeks, that way we know where everybody is and everybody is involved in making decisions on what we do and how we do it.”
McCann is no stranger to cattle organizations across the country and has been very active in advocating for the industry his entire life.
“The industry itself is filled with individuals that are the salt of the earth,” said McCann. “We are interested in feeding the world.”
When it comes to his philosophy on the farm, McCann’s view is simple.
“These are the Lord’s cattle,” said McCann. “I put his brand on them; I’m just taking care of them.”
As the next two generations are becoming more involved on their farm in southwest Missouri, McCann looks towards passing on the legacy of farming for life.
“Farm for life is what I’ve been living all my life, I just didn’t know it,” said McCann. “I was just out there doing what I knew how to do, and trying to do a good job at it. To me, when they say farm for life, it’s not just my life. There’s a lot of other people out there that are going to be involved in this industry for life.”
Farm for Life is an editorial series of the Missouri Department of Agriculture
— Missouri Department of Agriculture
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