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On the Trail with Bump Postlethwait
Written by: Paige Hoffman< Back to Articles
Just as the Buckeye tree plants its roots in Ohio, Bump Postlethwait, a natural-born cowboy from Byesville, plants his in rodeo. Born Raymond Postlethwait, or JP as his mom liked to call him, was given the name Bump when his dad heard the bump, bump sound of his heart beat while his mom was in labor. She passed away when he was only eight but, “The name’s stuck with me ever since.” Though raised in southern Ohio Bump now resides in Adrian, Mich. with his wife, Andrea and their four kids Chelsea, Haley, Hunter and Ayden.
Following in the footsteps of a man he’s always admired, Bump took to rodeo at a young age watching his father. “I grew up around it, I wanted to be like him.” His father who placed 16th in the world at the RCA was one of Bump’s biggest supporters growing up and always helped him along the way. Starting at nine years old, Bump rode his first amateur bull then at fourteen he was doggin’ steers. He went to a clinic held by his friends who taught him how to bull dog and when he went to his first rodeo he placed. “I never really had to work at anything, never practiced much. I’ve just always been able to do it. If I wanted it I went and I did it.” The Buckeye Rodeo Company was a rodeo was where his dad went and where he grew up. Today, Bump competes in all three rough stock events: bull riding, saddle bronc and bareback as well as team roping and bull dogging.
What started out as a fun, family affair soon turned into a job for Bump. He won all-around four years in a row in high school and did so well he qualified for a scholarship to Martin, Tenn. His rodeo career was doing well and as he continued to succeed he turned down the chance for the scholarship, “I was making good money and it was easier not to go to school.”
It was while riding horses at a horse sale he met his future wife who was looking at horses to buy. In 2008 after dating a few years, Bump married Andrea and welcomed her four children as his own. “It’s hard when she’s not at the rodeo with me,” Bump explains. “She keeps the horses warmed up and ready for me. She makes my job a lot easier.” Andrea is his backbone and what he does couldn’t be possible without her support. As for his kids, “Hunter,” Bump says, “wants to go on with it more than the others.”
Full story available in our May 1, 2015 issue. Read online!