Millie Bankston is a breakaway roper in the Tri-State Rodeo Association. The Albany, Louisiana cowgirl was six months old when her parents put her on a horse, and “I fell in love,” she says. Growing up on a farm, she helped her dad and grandpa with the cattle work. The rodeo started from there. In high school, Millie competed in the Mississippi High School Rodeo Association in the barrel racing and breakaway roping. She graduated from Albany High School and went on to Southeastern Louisiana University, where she ran barrels, making the Ozark Region Finals. She graduated with a degree in general studies. Millie got her first Tri-State card in 1999, and has competed at their Finals about a dozen times. She won the breakaway championship in 2012. She is also a Professional Cowboys Association member. She has two roping horses. Striker, a twenty year old bay with a coon tail, carried her to her 2012 title. Her second horse is Rock, an eighteen year old black gelding. Rock is unique. “If a horse can have OCD, he’s got it,” Millie says. “He’s the type of horse that if something is out of place, he notices it right away.” Both of her horses are very loving, she says. “I like to think they’re good at their job. I’m blessed to have two good horses.” She first met her husband, Wyman Bankston, when they were at a rodeo, and he was 13 and she was twelve. They didn’t meet again till they were in their twenties, and they married in 2005. He is an “absolute blessing,” she says. “He’s very loving, caring, and very supportive of what I do. But most of all, he’s a Christian.” She works as the office administrator for her husband’s law firm in Livingston. They enjoy being together all day. “We have a wonderful relationship. We’re best friends.” She is appreciative of her parents, Harry and Linda Sherman, and all they did for her. “They have supported me since I was five and went to my first horse show. Without them, I wouldn’t have been able to achieve the goals I achieved.” Her dad passed away in 2011, and Millie dedicated her 2012 Tri-State title to him. “He loved to watch me rope.” She is helping the next generation of ropers with her nephew Austin and her cousin Scott, and she knows how powerful rodeo can be for young people and families. It “can make a great impact on young kids, and it’s such a good family sport when there are bad things going on in the world. Rodeo can have such a positive impact on kids.” She notices how Austin and Scott look up to rodeo cowboys. “To be able to be that positive example and to be a Christian example is more important than anything I can do with a rope in my hand.” Millie wants to serve as an ambassador for Christ with her actions and words. “The way God has moved in my life, put me in places, and used me, that’s what counts. You have to speak life into somebody. And if I can use rodeo to do that, that’s what makes me happy.”
Casey Sellers is a persistent cowboy from Buffalo, Wyo. In 2013, that persistence paid off when the 18-year-old was able to win the 2013 WHSRA […]
April 04, 2014
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