It was during the late 60s when Bronx boy Bobby DelVecchio was taken by his dad to a rodeo out in Jersey—a trip that would forever alter his life.
Prior to that, DelVecchio’s world didn’t revolve much beyond his home on E 182nd Street or the Grand Concourse for that matter.
But that fateful trip sparked an interest in him that would take him on a journey that eventually got him inducted into the National Cowboy Hall of Fame & Western Heritage in Oklahoma City back in 2015.
The New York Post writes:
“My dad said, ‘C’mon, son, we’re going to watch the rodeo,’” recalls DelVecchio, 60, who speaks with a twang that’s more Dallas than Da Bronx.
His father took him to the Cowtown Rodeo in Pilesgrove, NJ. “It was crazy. It was like the Wild West with all of these cowboys running around wearing cowboy hats and chaps,” he says. “They had junior bull riding [young adults riding less-volatile steers that buck] and I looked down my nose at that. I said that was for wimps, but I was probably jealous.”
Ironically that “wimp” sport would become his livelihood and take him around the world. DelVecchio would go from city slicker to a founding member of the Professional Bull Riders (PBR) organization, which will come to Madison Square Garden on Friday for its annual competition, which turns the world’s most famous arena into a bona fide rodeo.
A week after DelVecchio’s trip to the Jersey sticks, father and son returned. This time, his dad’s friend coaxed DelVecchio into riding a yearling as the other young competitors looked on. He was bucked off almost instantaneously.
“I got my ass kicked. And them boys were laughing at me,” he says. “I wanted to turn around and start whooping everybody but I couldn’t. I left pissed and said, ‘We’re coming back next week.’”
A fire was lit and the kid from The Bronx was soon practicing by taking his bull rope out on his fire escape. By the time he was 16, DelVecchio was competing up and down the East Coast and had entered his first pro rodeo, winning $73 riding a bull named Valentine.
We love reading about our Bronxites around the world and who would have thunk one of us turning into a real life cowboy?
Read the rest:
How a Boy From the Bronx Became a Rodeo Star—The New York Post
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