Dominic Chavez rodeo benefit

It was a community affair as several rodeo competitors from around New Mexico competeted at the Socorro Rodeo Complex in order to raise money for a fellow rider and his family while he is recovering from a severe injury. Competition was fierce over the two day Jackpot team roping challenge.

On June 29 and 30 the Socorro Rodeo Complex hosted a special Dominic Chavez Benefit team roping event to raise money for the Chavez family. Chavez works for the MRGCD and is a well respected member of the rodeo community. In March of this year he was clearing brush in ditches near the river when there was a propane tank malfunction that severely burned his arms and chest area, forcing him to have an extended hospital stay and rehabilitation programs.

Friend and fellow rider Danny Monette was one of the main figures in charge of organizing the benefit.

“We wanted to do something for the family,” he said. “But it’s also nice to see the local support. Several farmers donated things like feed for the livestock. The community has been really great for this event in helping out a friend. It shows how much of a family the rodeo can be.”

Beyond food, the Socorro Rodeo Complex was donated for free during the weekend. All those working the event were volunteers and several cowboy themed items were available to bid on in a silent auction. After the standard stock fees proceeds were given to the Chavez family during the with the winners receiving a Maynard Buckles award in individual rounds.

Ropers started off with a 13 slide, which allots for higher level ropers to compete against more novice riders with scores being adjusted per experience level. The other three events were a straight 11, 10 and 8 respectively meaning the horse and riders rankings must be designated at that particular level of competition. It was not an NMRA sanctioned event and was referred to as a ‘Jackpot’ open.

Announcer and event secretary Sarah Gutierrez was busy on both days keeping score and team numbers correct between the more than 40 different pairings spread out into four numbered groups.

“Some of the best ropers in the state came out for this,” she said. “Especially today (Saturday) with the higher ranked ropers hitting the arena. They are certainly going to put on quite a show. It’s gonna be a knife fight out there with these top guys and gals.”

A total of 35 local businesses made contributions towards the event including Ark of Socorro Vet Clinic, T & T Trailers, Vega Farms, Michael Olguin Ins. and many others.

Folks can still donate to help support the Chavez family by contacting Danny Monette at 575-838-7311 or Buddy Fowler at 817-269-1318.