Despite waking up with the flu one morning this week, Bonnie Holter headed out to take part in a 6 a.m. vigil outside the home of a member of the American Crystal Sugar Co. board of directors in East Grand Forks, Minn. Tired and ready to head back to bed after returning home, she still exuded the resolve that, despite having retired from American Crystal Sugar this year, propels her to actively back the 1,300 locked-out workers.
“It’s important to support the workers,” says Holter, 60. “They were our family. I was proud to be a union member and I still want to help the union out.”
Holter and her husband, Jerome, who most people call Jay, spent decades working for the sugar beet processing company before management locked out workers in August 2011.