Ezward "Junior" Bachand – Champion in attitude | TSLN.com

Ezward "Junior" Bachand – Champion in attitude

Rhonda Sedgwick Stearns

Submitted photoEz Bachand at the NIRA Regional Finals in Casper, WY.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

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He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

What could be more perfect than growing up on a ranch in the beautiful Black Hills of South Dakota in the 1940’s, with an uncle and elder brothers to mentor you into the colorful, exciting sport of rodeo?

How about discovering you have exceptional talent in all five events? Another sweet boon would be the growth of high school and college rodeo, offering ideal opportunities to participate. Grab a good buddy and spend the summer at the popular tourist destination of Cody, WY, where you can hone your rodeo skills five nights a week! Talk about the good life.

Ezward “Junior” Bachand, born in Sturgis, SD in 1939, had all of that and more. His uncle Oscar helped him get started in rodeo, as did his brothers Frank and Monte. He worked all five events successfully in high school rodeo, then joined his friend Clifford Johnson to spend the summer of 1958 seriously “learning to rodeo” at the Cody Night Rodeo, where he was mentored by an old professional bareback rider named Hank. Bachand left town with the year-end bareback championship.

By the time he’d started his formal education at the School of Mines in Rapid City, SD and moved on to South Dakota State University at Brookings, Junior was specializing in bareback and saddle bronc riding – but he’d sometimes also ride bulls and bulldog. He just loved rodeo, and was a fantastic athlete.

Longtime prorodeo producer Jim Korkow says, “He had excellent form and style and a lot of natural ability, everything necessary to win many championships.”

“Smokey Jensen told me to get away from those bulls,” Junior recalls, “or they’d hurt me. So I eventually gravitated to mostly bareback riding, and a few saddle broncs.”

He qualified for the Season Finals of the National Intercollegiate Rodeo Association three years running. In 1962 he finished third in National Bareback standings. He also worked any small rodeo he could get to, amateur or pro, riding on an RCA permit he was hoping to fill. He added the 1962 Bareback Bronc Riding championship of the South Dakota Rodeo Association to his list of accomplishments.

The summer of 1963, Junior entered the prorodeo in Wahoo, NE. He was just married, to beautiful blonde Loretta Simon, and they were on their honeymoon. Korkow’s were producing the Wahoo rodeo, and because of that Jim Korkow had missed being in the wedding party as Junior wanted. Still determined to share the celebration of their marriage with Jim, the Bachand’s planned their honeymoon to include the rodeo.

Junior drew the big, strong bareback named Red Snapper. The ride felt good, his spurring lick was solid, and when the whistle blew, instead of reaching for the pickup man who was right alongside, he reached his free hand forward to get a mane hold. At that instant Red Snapper gave a high kick, catapulting Junior out the front-end like a rocket, to land directly on his head.

Rodeo judge Chuck Jacobs had marked a goose egg on his score sheet, saying Junior missed the bronc out. But he didn’t even find that out for quite a while – and it didn’t make a whole lot of difference anyway.

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