I’ve had a number of wonderful memories through the sport of rodeo. From watching my friends compete for gold buckles to having unorthodox phone conversations at 2 a.m., I’ve been pretty blessed.
The greatest rodeo moment came five years ago in Guymon, Okla., when I proposed to my wife, Lynette, during a fundraiser for Pioneer Days Rodeo. With the help of several members of the rodeo committee, I made out to surprise my bride-to-be in a way she would never expect. I’d made up envelopes that contained sheets of paper the words, “Lynette, Will You Marry Me?” I was holding the page with “Me?” on it, and when it was time, I got down on one knee.
The surprise and joy on Lynette’s face made all that planning more than worth it. Then she was prompted to open her envelope, which contained an 8-by-11 sheet of paper with the word “YES!” on one side. She held that 300-point bold type up to the crowd of 200 people.
I was tickled. Then Lynette told the crowd, “I didn’t have any other choice.”
Actually, she did. On the opposite side of the page was a little bitty “no,” done in 6-point lightface type. But she stuck with her first answer, and I’m still thankful. Over the past half decade, she has been my biggest supporter and a driving force for everything I do.
In two weeks, we will return to the Oklahoma Panhandle for one of the greatest rodeos in the country. We will celebrate the 10-year anniversary of our meeting, back when we shared a friendship and passion for rodeo, years before we fell in love and made our family.
I count those blessings still.