COCHRANE NOW – Written by Noel Edey Wednesday, Sep 08 2021, 11:00 AM
Jim and the late Connie Ullery are the recipients of this year’s Don Edge Memorial Award for cowboy/girl of the year.
Jim was paraded into the arena in a customized mid-60s Pontiac Bonneville white convertible by family members. There he was greeted by several past recipients of the award.
Jim says he was honoured that he and Connie were recognized. He only wishes Connie was here to receive it and had only passed away three weeks ago.
Jim was a tough rodeo competitor but also played a large role in organizing the Labour Day Weekend Rodeo.
“I was one of the first members here when the Lions Club first put on the rodeo. In fact, I was the rodeo chairman for quite a few years.”
Connie was originally from the city but came to embrace and love the sport of rodeo. She became known as a ‘rodeo mom’ to many young men and women over the years.
The couple met in 1960 and two years later they tied the knot and remained happily married for 59 years.
Among other things, she was a long-time secretary and timer for the Labour Day Weekend rodeo.
Chris Connon, rodeo co-chair and Lions president, says the Ullery family has a deep-rooted rodeo heritage. Jim use to compete, their three boys were rough stock contestants and their daughter was a barrel racer.
About the Don Edge Memorial Award
When Don Edge passed, the Cochrane Lions establish an award to honour people who are part of the area’s proud Western heritage.
“They aren’t just people that have worked at the Cochrane Rodeo,” explains rodeo co-chair Kevin Firkus. “It’s people who help keep the lifestyle of our Western heritage.”
John Copithorne was the first recipient and he speaks highly of Don and his family.
“Don started a lot of rodeos, provided a lot of good inspiration and knowledge, and that all came from his very successful rodeo career,” says Copithorne. “He was always a community man and always aware and knowledgeable about the Western way. He was an excellent cattle rancher.”
Jim Uffel says he knew Don well, and the two were good friends.
Sue-Anne recipient of brand new Ranch Rodeo award
Long-time ranch rodeo cowgirl Sue-Anne Wearmouth was named the first recipient of the Lions Rodeo Cowgirl(boy) Up Award on Sept. 3.
Sue-Anne says she’s been with the Cowgirl Cattle Company (CCC) for the past 10-11 years and usually participates in four ranch rodeos a year, although that’s been cut back to just two this year because of the pandemic. She says the Slimdor Ranch Rodeo is their favour.
“It’s fabulous,” she says. “This is the best one.”
The Cowgirl Cattle Company has been entering a team in the Slimdor event since it was created 18 years ago. Their mission is to promote our Western values and heritage and is a group of like-minded women who share a background in the agricultural industry, mainly ranching and rodeo.