I was twenty-nine years of age and a senior at Colorado A&M School of Veterinary Medicine. A classmate, student Resnick and I were surveying the minority of female students in the school cafeteria. There were not too many bachelors in our post-war class. IN fact, I was the youngest of the World War II veterans who made up half of our class.

There were three young women at a nearby table, the one unofficially reserved for college rodeo contestants. Each table had its socializing students such as Animal Husbandry majors, Forestry students, Veterinary students (including me, etc.).

Resnick and I commented back and forth about the girls. He asked, “Have you asked that one in the middle for a date?”

“No”, I responded. “She’s sure cute, but she’s a Freshman. This is her first year on campus. I’m almost thirty. I can’t date a teenager.”

“You’re wrong!” he said. “I happen to know that she is twenty-three. She transferred here from a Texas school because she wanted to be on the National Intercollegiate rodeo team. She’s a champion barrel racer. Our team in the U.S. Champion.”

“Are you sure?” I asked.

“Yes! She told me! She’s a California girl. Why don’t you ask her out?”

The annual Intercollegiate Rodeo was held every spring during the school year.

As an active member I was aware that a spring rodeo meant that most of the contestants would be out of shape, having been daily college students since school began in September.

The student chapter of the American Veterinary Medical Association at our Colorado school held a dog show each year in order to raise funds for the chapter, the profit the previous year was zero.

I proposed that we sponsor a college rodeo in the fall, after the rodeo contestants had been competing all summer in non-collegiate rodeos, for several reasons:

  1. It would be much more profitable than a dog show
  2. Limited to the students at our school, all of the winning contestants would be Colorado A&M students.
  3. Held in the fall instead of the spring, the contestants would be in better shape, meaning a better rodeo for the spectators, which meant better income for our chapter.

I was appointed to judge the calf roping. When I did so, I noticed Debby, sitting on the top railing of the calf chute. Despite her juvenile appearance, she looked so sweet and pretty that I decided to call her and ask for a date.

So, on Monday, after the successful weekend rodeo, I telephones her and said that we had spoken briefly at the rodeo while I was there judging the calf roping. I suggested a coffee date. She agreed and nearly missed a college ski club meeting in order to be on time. The rest is history, including our most recent wedding anniversary… our sixty-third. Debby, now 87, still competes in horse events, and is still skiing. Life would not have been the same without her.