Association MemberJoin Rodeo News
Meet the Member David Wilson
story by Lindsay King
“I just want to be a soldier for the Lord,” said David Wilson from Artesia, New Mexico. This ordained minister doesn’t give his sermons inside a building, his message of love and grace can be heard just about anywhere but inside a church. “It’s just something I felt like I needed to do. I lost a good friend of mine to suicide along with my father (BR Wilson), so I like to preach the good news. I like to show people there is hope and grace through the scriptures.” To this day, David’s father is still his hero. There was nothing BR couldn’t accomplish once he put his mind to it and that’s clearly a trait passed on to his son. “My dad started steer wrestling later in life. He was about 36 and I was 12 when we bought a couple of horses from the sale barn. That’s when I started hazing for my father.”
The self-made steer wrestlers quickly learned the ropes of the big man’s event. “I started competing in amateur rodeos when I was fifteen years old. It’s just been a passion of mine since then and God’s allowed me to keep doing it for the last 46 years.” David never really tried his hand at roping, but he got on some roughstock before realizing he was born to be a steer wrestler. In 1974, with BR as his hazer, David won his first amateur rodeo and his life-long pursuit of rodeo began. “I went to amateur rodeos long before I ever entered any junior rodeos.” David competed in both high school and college rodeo. He attended New Mexico Junior College in Hobbs where he went on to win the southwest region in 1979. “For me that was probably one of my biggest accomplishments; I really enjoyed college rodeo.”
Today, at 61 years old, David can still be found willingly throwing himself off a stampeding horse. “I get pretty close to the Lord before I hit the corner of the box, that’s for sure. One of the neatest things for me is watching these kids grow up and still getting to play with them.” The father of two – Lacy, 33, and Justin, 32 – the family still regularly attends rodeos together. David’s wife, Diana, got into barrel racing once the kids were involved in the sport. “We’ve been married for 34 years and I could not be where I am today without her help. I just want her to know how proud I am that she is in my life.” Both Diana and Lacy run barrels, while David and Justin will each haze for each other. It’s clearly a father-son sport for the Wilsons.
David tried his hand in the PRCA in the 80s, but for the most part he has and is a weekend warrior. This rancher turned contractor really wouldn’t have it any other way. “Just like any other working family, there were some years I didn’t get to go. But it’s been good to me. It’s one of the few times that you are the master of your mind for just a little bit. I guess it’s always been my way of relieving stress.” David’s always been a member of the NMRA because it caters to his way of life and it involves his whole family. “It’s just like family, that’s one of the things I like about the NMRA. As a whole it is a great association, they are trying to bring it back and I hope it truly flies. My wife asked me why I love it so much and I told her that’s where my roots are.” David is a tried and true New Mexico native; he loves his state with his whole heart. He does admit there are “miles of nothing here.” But that’s been the scene out the windshield surrounding some of his greatest memories with his family. “I just feel so honored that I got to compete with my dad and now I am getting to compete with my own son.”