Lowell Elwood Broin went to be with the Lord May 1, 2024.

He was the son of Arthur and Edna (Flaten) Broin, born at home on October 31, 1938.  He was baptized and confirmed at Holden Lutheran Church in rural Kenyon, and was raised in Wanamingo Township on County One Boulevard. Lowell attended country school at the District 85 schoolhouse in Cherry Grove Township. He attended and graduated from Kenyon High School in 1956. He was a lifelong member of Holden Lutheran Church.

When he was a senior in high school, he enlisted in the Army Reserves in Kenyon, Company C, 411th Infantry Regiment, 103rd Infantry Division. Lowell farmed with his father on the home farm.

Lowell married Judith Ann Hanson, October 11,1958 at United Methodist Church in Nerstrand.  He moved a small house onto the Broin homestead, where they raised their four children and ran the farm. Lowell was a very creative farmer, always figuring out ways to improve the farm without spending too much.  He tore down old houses and used the lumber for projects around the farm. He tore down silos and moved them. He used staves from one of the silos to build a swimming pool behind the house.  He built a new swine farrowing barn from the ground up using only family labor. He retrofitted his corn dryer to burn biomass and railroad ties for heat.

In the late 70’s Lowell learned about some farmers that were experimenting with making alcohol on their farms, using the alcohol as fuel, and feeding the byproduct to their livestock. He envisioned that alcohol could be a significant use for corn, perhaps eventually making the farmland set-aside program unnecessary.

He visited with others that had failed with their small ethanol plants, to find out what worked and what didn’t.  He sourced used equipment from auctions and salvage yards, built some of the equipment with the help of a local welding shop, and the family and a few others helped with the erection, equipment installation, plumbing, electrical, and instrumentation.

The farm-scale plant started operations in 1985, and it went on to demonstrate the successful production of ethanol to the Broin family and to many others. Lowell purchased a larger bankrupt ethanol plant at a bankruptcy sale in Scotland, South Dakota in 1987.  Lowell’s sons joined him, and Broin Companies was born.  Today 35% of U.S. corn production is processed through bioethanol plants to provide 10% of U.S. gasoline demand plus many co-products.

Lowell’s beloved first wife, Judith, passed away unexpectedly in 2008.  But eventually Lowell met Nancy, and on June 26th,2010, Lowell married Nancy Shatford at Holden Lutheran Church. Lowell and Nancy have had many wonderful years together, spending summers at Lake Madison in South Dakota, and winters in Lake Havasu City, Arizona.  Nancy became a beloved stepmother, grandmother, and great-grandmother to all of the Broin children, grandchildren and great-grand-children.

Lowell is survived by his wife, Nancy Broin, residing at Goodhue Living in Goodhue, children Robert (Miriam) Broin, Sioux Falls, Cindy (Nick) Fisher-Broin, Wanamingo, Jeff (Tammie) Broin, Sioux Falls, Todd (Linda) Broin, Sioux Falls, grandchildren Adam (Joy), Derek (Molly), and Jacob Broin, Josiah (Rachael), Noah (Alexzandra), Jonah (Emma Christine), and Emma Fisher, Alyssa (Drew) Christensen, Miranda Broin, Austin Broin, Lucas Broin, Jared Broin, and Jessica Broin, nine great-grandchildren, sister in law Sarah Broin, Kenyon, brother in law Richard Hanson, Kenyon, sister in law Barbara Hanson, Northfield, and numerous nieces and nephews.  He was preceded in death by his parents; first wife, Judith Ann (Hanson) Broin, brother Arthur Donald, brother Harland, and sister Beverly Felten.

Visitation will be at Holden Lutheran Church, rural Kenyon on Wednesday, May 8th from 12:30 - 2:00 PM. A funeral service will be held Wednesday, May 8, 2024 at 2:00 PM at Holden Lutheran Church, rural Kenyon with Pastor Dustin Haider officiating.  Interment will be in the Holden Lutheran Cemetery.

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