story by Michele Toberer At 12 years old, 7th grader, Braxton Guillot, has already been rodeoing half of his life, and certainly has roping calves […]
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Meet the Member Kenzie King
story by Michele Toberer
Kenzie King comes from a long line of Louisiana High School Rodeo Association competitors and is competing for her second season with LJHSRA as a 7th grader in the junior division. Kenzie competes in ribbon roping with partner Huel Willis, as well as in barrel racing and pole bending. Kenzie’s dad, Don King, a farrier for the past 25 years competed in LHSRA during his high school years, qualifying for the national high school rodeo finals in saddle bronc riding. Shelly King, Kenzie’s stay-at-home mom, is an LHSRA alumna who qualified for nationals in barrel racing, pole bending and goat tying, and was the 1990 LHSRA Champion Goat Tyer. Don’s dad, Jay King, was a calf roper, and Shelly’s dad, Shelby Ritter, deceased, was a bull rider. Shelly explained, “At 13, Kenzie is the caboose of our rodeo family. Her older sister Kori King is 21 and is a past LHSRA champion barrel racer and national finals qualifier multiple times. Kyle King is Kenzie’s 26-year-old brother who qualified for nationals three years and was a Louisiana state champion team roper.”
With genes like hers, there’s no doubt that Kenzie would take to rodeo like she has since she began at just 4 years old. The Iowa, Louisiana cowgirl manages her rodeo competition while maintaining a 3.9 GPA at Victory Baptist School. Kenzie has been recognized with many awards at the school, for her citizenship and academic achievements. Her favorite subject is reading, and when she has the time, she loves to read mysteries. Other than school, most of Kenzie’s time is centered around rodeo.
“It’s really helped me as a rodeo competitor to have older siblings, and family members that also rodeo. I’ve looked up to them, and to my cousin Addie, and I think watching them compete helps me in my own competition. Knowing my sister and brother and parents have all won state titles gives me the motivation to work hard because I know that I can achieve those same things if I really try. My family gives me lots of advice, and I get to practice with my cousin Addie a lot, so it makes it all so much fun.”
Kenzie competes in barrel racing on her 6-year-old sorrel gelding, registered as This Bugs Famous but lovingly known as 2Pads. “Papa Scott, Mama T, and Madison Jeane gave 2Pads to me last year. The Jeane family has been such great friends to me. We call him 2Pads because he’s a little swaybacked, so we use 2 saddle pads on him when we tack him up. I love how tall he is, and he has a great personality. He’s calm and sweet and likes his loving. He can get sassy sometimes, but most of the time he’s sweet and kind, and he loves his apple crisp horse treats!”
When Kenzie grows up, she’d like to go to nursing or veterinary school. “I might change my mind by then, but I just know that I want to do something that involves taking care of something, and I think being a vet will be a good fit because I’ve been around animals my whole life.” Right now, her main goal is winning a barrel saddle and qualifying for the junior high national finals in Des Moines, Iowa this June.
“I’m so thankful for everyone that’s helped me along my rodeo rode. My dad shoes my horses, my mom makes sure I’m entered in the rodeos, and my granny, Linda Ritter is always supportive. I love the LHSRA because we get to go as a family to see our rodeo family and friends and get to travel and compete all over in different states. It’s a great life.”