In Part 1 of my Australian Adventure, Bob Neuman’s daughter Sedly Gibbs opened her home and life to me. And now, for the rest of the story….
When Sedly and I had begun to organize my trip and make plans for my stay in Australia, she asked if I might help two of her friends come to the States. So, in true Rodeo Family style, I got help in finding a place for Jack and Sally, of Gingin Western Australia, a place to hang their hats while visiting Oklahoma, and Montana. In return, they helped to ride a few horses while they stayed in Oklahoma.
Jack Morris grew up in the Kimberly Region of Western Australia on a cattle station, with a brother and two sisters. They were around 2 hours from the nearest town and raised mainly Drought Master cattle. A grocery truck would drop supplies to his family on a scheduled route. They “mustered”, or gathered, their cattle with horses and helicopter.
Sally Latham grew up in the Pilbara Region of Western Australia. Her dad had a large number of Thoroughbred race horses, and she literally grew up riding on and around the racetrack, polo field, and rodeo arena running barrels in Western Australia.
Jack and Sally hit the ground running as soon as they landed in Los Angeles. They started seeing the sights all on their own. By the time they drove up through Oklahoma via Dallas; Jack had already rented a car and drove them from airport! Besides navigating heavy Dallas traffic for the first time, Jack had to get used to the steering wheel being on the left side of the car, and driving on the right side of the road. According to Sally, that was quite an adventure in and of itself!
Jack and Sally were a perfect fit for the Oklahoma ranch with a horse training facility and beef cattle operations. They stayed in the area for several weeks before meeting up with fellow Australian and lifelong friend Anthony Thomas at the Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo in Cheyenne, Wyoming. Anthony is currently sitting 27th in the PRCA Bareback World Standings. They went on to spend time at the Cervi Ranch in Colorado and attended their bucking horse futurity sale.
One thing is for sure: rodeo and western event people stick together. Yes – the Internet and Facebook make the world a smaller place but there’s nothing that will ever take the place of rodeo family. And it’s nice that you can find that family from one end of the world to the other – literally!