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Mike Johnson
Mike Johnson

OK, I’ll admit it: My stomach turned a little when I read about Mike Johnson’s unfortunate mishap in Red Bluff, Calif., last week. reported that Johnson was stepping out of his trailer when a gust of wind blew the door shut, severing the end of the Oklahoma roper’s left thumb in the process.

“It was just a freak accident,” Johnson, a 23-time Wrangler National Finals Rodeo qualifier, told Blaine Santos. “I just happened to be stepping out of the trailer, and I had my hand in the crack by the door there, when a gust of wind blew it shut. It happened just that quick. The edges on those doors are sharp, I can tell you. It caught me right between the joint and the thumbnail.”

The amputation was between the end knuckle and the thumbnail, Johnson said, and the digit was re-attached.

Johnson is a 48-year-old cowboy from Henryetta, Okla., who first roped at the NFR when it was still held in Oklahoma City. He last roped at the NFR in 2008. I’d love to see him roping again in the Thomas & Mack Center.

Because of this injury, it won’t be this year. But I admire Johnson’s ability and determination.


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