Problem solved! sort of... I asked coworkers if they "knew anyone." Turns out there's a place 100 yards from my work that can do it!
The place fixes trucks. One of their specialties is framework. Making frames longer or shorter.
They sent over their veteran welder and after a briefing he took a look.Checked out the area, slag hammered it up a bit, cleared additional rust, made the hole bigger..etc.
I presented him with a few pictures from here and whatever else I could find on the internet of people fixing the same problem. Also showed him that the piece could be purchased from Quadratec.
After all was said and done he declared he was going to patch it with some thick steel he had. Essentially he is going to reinforce it. He will make a thick bracket of sorts so that it welds to the strong pieces on of the frame, obviously. It will extend on the underside of the frame section and up top more than halfway up the frame. He mentioned he didn't want to do any work that would change the drive angle or anything.
He said to replace the whole section, the Quadratech way, would be a PITA, time consuming, cost worthy and more cost worthy. He said all he needs to do to gain access to this point is to lift it up- and remove the front bumper and the plastic piece behind it without having to remove or replace the steering box. I think I will be replacing the bolts for the steering box very shortly.
In addition to that- he is going to inspect the rest of the frame. This is great because he knows what he's doing and is going to give me the dirty low down if anything else is structurally unsound.
In the end he is charging me $300 for everything. Parts and labor. My coworkers said this is a good price all things considered. Is it? It seems like a good price.
Anywho..thats the word...for now.