“He was a cowboy’s cowboy. He could rope, ride and cover any bull,” friend Austin Shirley said.
Mason Lowe, a professional bull rider, died Tuesday after suffering injuries during an event at the National Western Stock Show at the Denver Coliseum, according to the Professional Bull Riders Association.
“We are deeply saddened to report that Mason Lowe passed away this evening following injuries sustained at the PBR event in Denver,” CEO Sean Gleason said in a statement. “The entire PBR and National Western sports family extends our heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathies to Mason’s wife Abbey and his family.”
Lowe, 25, was ranked No. 18 in the world.
A witness told Denver’s CBS4 that Lowe was bucked off the bull he was riding, and the animal then stepped on his chest. Lowe got up, took a few steps and then collapsed, the report said.
Lowe grew up in Exeter, Missouri — a small town of fewer than 800 people — and started riding animals when he was just 3 years old, according to the PBR website.
Eschewing high school rodeos, Lowe began competing in amateur events at the age of 15, per the Professional Bull Riders. A 2016 profile on the organization’s website described him as a bull rider who couldn’t enjoy himself if he wasn’t pushing himself to limits. Lowe pursued the wildest, rankest bulls he could find, according to that profile.
Austin Shirley met Lowe rodeoing eight or nine years ago through a mutual friend.
“Hell, he was a cowboy’s cowboy,” Shirley told The Denver Post in a message. “He could rope, ride and cover any bull. He never forgot where he came from (when) he made it big time and never forgot his roots.
“He was just an all-around great guy and someone you were proud to call a friend.”