Kyle Kurt fought to keep his emotions just below the surface as he talked about selling off his herd of Holstein dairy cows, which he's milked twice a day, 365 days a year, through good times and bad.

Dairy farming has been Kurt's livelihood, and his passion, since he graduated from Lodi High School 18 years ago. But come Monday, he's having an auction to sell his cows, his milking equipment, his tractors and other farm machinery that he's spent years acquiring. 

Scores of Wisconsin farmers are in a similar predicament. And with them, a way of life that has defined much of the state for more than a century and a half is disintegrating. 

With collapsed prices of milk, grain and other commodities, farmers are losing money no matter how many 16-hour days they put in milking cows, caring for livestock, and planting and harvesting crops. 

Read more in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.