Clarence Hanson, one of the Union County farmers who optioned land for the proposed Hyperion Energy Center, died Sunday at the age of 99.

Back in April 2008, during the runup to the Union County election to rezone land for the controversial oil refinery and power plant, the Journal profiled Hanson, only the third generation of his family to live on the 160 acres homesteaded by his grandfather Andrew Hanson in 1899.

"Hanson's white, wood-frame farmhouse was built by his parents in 1910, the year he was born," staff writer Michele Linck wrote in the story, "Hyperion's impact? It's personal."

"The house, with its broad front porch, is so evocative of wholesome Midwestern values and the rural way of life that Gateway filmed a computer commercial there about 10 years ago.

The TV spot shows a man driving up to the house in a shiny red pickup truck with a big black and white, cow-spotted box in its bed.

"It's the same route Hanson remembers traveling years ago himself in the bed of a wooden-wheeled, horse-drawn lumber wagon driven by his mother on their way to town for groceries."

Hanson's passing comes as Hyperion negotiates a two-year extension of its land options. Full more on those efforts, check out the Journal's latest Hyperion coverage on Sunday.

Services for Hanson will be 10:30 a.m. Thursday at St. Paul's Lutheran Church in rural Elk Point.

For a full obituary, read here.

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