story by Ruth Nicolaus For Phoenix Brown, time is of the essence on school mornings. The fourteen-year-old cowgirl, a member of the Nebraska Junior High […]
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Meet the Member Troy Kirkpatrick
by Ruth Nicolaus
Troy Kirkpatrick knows how to handle adversity.
He was diagnosed with juvenile diabetes at the age of eighteen months. But it doesn’t stop him from doing the things he loves.
The fourteen-year-old cowboy, a resident of Broken Bow, Nebraska, ropes in the Nebraska Junior High School Rodeo Association. He wears an insulin pump as he rides, which sometimes needs to be adjusted on rodeo days. If the pump is in a certain location on his torso that could be in the way when dismounting from the horse or flanking a calf, he takes it off. Other than that, his life is normal.
For the tie-down roping, he rides a ten-year-old yellow horse named Roger, who is gentle, and has a “real nice stop on him.” For the heeling (he heels for Jake Clark), he rides a seven-year-old yellow horse named Old Yeller.
He is an eighth grade student at Anselmo-Merna School, where sports are one of his favorite things to do. He plays football and basketball, wrestles, and runs track. His favorite class is math, and his favorite teacher is Mr. Gruszczynski, his fifth grade science teacher.
Troy loves to hunt deer, coyotes and turkeys. He enjoys movies, with his favorite ones being “Eight Seconds” and “The Cowboys.” His favorite food is pig in a blanket, made by his grandma Bettie, and his favorite cowboys are Trevor Brazile and Tuf Cooper.
He lost the tip of a finger this spring in a freak accident. A steer threw his head up when he went to take the rope off, catching the middle finger on Troy’s right hand. The bone was shattered and the nerves died. Doctors tried to get it to heal, but it didn’t. The accident hasn’t affected his roping, writing, or anything else.
When he grows up, he’d like to be a rancher and a professional team roper and tie-down roper.
He has three older sisters: twins Hannah and Katie, and Maggie.
He is the son of Steve Kirkpatrick and the late Karen