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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - September 5, 1972, Lethbridge, Alberta Twetdoy, Somber J, 1972 THf LETHMIDGE HBtALD 13 By GAHRY ALLISON Herald Staff Writer It's a long road from Vietnam to the rodeo arenas in Canada and the United States but Mickey Bagncll has travelled that road. Mickey is a rodeo clown and bull fighter and appeared at many of the southern Alberta rodeos this past season. He volunteered to go to Viet- nam and served as a paratroop- er with the 101st Airborne Di- vision from 1966 to 1969. While there he also Improved on his rodeo techniques and bull fight- ing abilities. "There were a lot of water buffalo in 'Nam and we used to try riding Mickey said. "TTiey were tough to ride. They wouldn't buck all that much but they could reach around and scrape you off with their long He also got in a little bull fighting practice as well. "We were in a terraced rice patty one day, complete with our packs and gun, when we happened on three water huf- falo as we rounded a Mickey said. "They took one look'and charged right at me, as I was in the lead. I ducked and dipped, and filially out ran them, jumping up to the next terrace just in time. It was my first experience at fighting bulls." Mickey must have enjoyed that experience tliough, be- cause that's the way he makes his living today, fighting bulk, lie comes by it honestly, as his father, Scotty Bagnell, rodeoed in Canada and the United States in the 40s and 50s and wound up lu's career as a bull fighter and clown. "He was pretty good at both said Mickey. "He once won the steer decorating title at the Calgary Stampede." Though his father was in the bull fighting business he didn't teach Mickey many tricks of Vietnam vet turns to job of rodeo clown the trade. Mickey picked up most of the secrets of the busi- ness along the way some- times the hard way. A 12-inch long, one-inch wide scar on his stomach is a re- minder of one lesson Mickey learned, never jump across a bull's head, at least not when he's waiting for you. Mickey was trying to help a downed rider when he spraflg over the head of the bull, plac- ing one foot squarely on its forehead, pushing down. The bull tossed its head, and Mick- ey, high into the sir. The air- borne clown came down, stom- ach first on the bull's hornless head. "I broke open inside like a watermelon. They took six Mickey Bagnell rodeo clown FOR COMPLETE BOOK PUBLISHING CONTACT The Lethtnidgc Herald PRINTING AND LITHOGRAPHY DIVISION PHONE 327-3203 or 328-441T Inches of intestine out. That bull ripped me up pretty good and I was layed up for over three months." The doctor later told him more damage done when he got up and walked out of the arena after the accident. When asked why he didn't lay there and wait for a stretch- er, Mickey replied that he felt it would look bad, especially to the kids, to see the clown hurt. "Clowns are supposed to be funny, and small children don't understand when they get in- jured." Only 133 pounds and five foot six inches tall, Mickey goes in for the nigged sports bull riding, clowning and boxing. At 16 he was the Inland Em- pire boxing champion In the U.S. and reached the national finals once in Las Vegas. He had 37 fights as an amateur. Bull fighting isn't an easy job. One of the less obvious things Mickey has to watch out for is that he doesn't get in the way. "If you're In too close the bulls won't perform the cow- boys call this too much inter- ference by the grease he related. "But at the same time, you can't be too far away as you have to be able to move in immediately when they're in trouble." Certain cowboys seem to get Into more hot water than oth- ers and the bull fighter must re- member these men and keep a particular eye out tor mem. The 24 year old Bagnell makes his home at Elk, Wash- ington, just outside of Spo- kane, and enjoys hunting and fishing when he can find the lime. Mickey loves to travel and says he lives his life day to day. "Someday I expect to save a little money I guess." This isn't the easiest thing when you are on the road all the time and only earning in the neigh- borhood of Though his wages aren't as high as some of the veteran clowns it won't be too long be- fore Mickey Bagnell is making top dollar for he has one prime requisite for the job he's good. It's all over but the shoutin' and the savin To bid fa I to all that remains of this model year, we'll accept any reasonable bid you moke on the car of your choice. Get the car you really wanted all year long at the prfco you'd expecl to pay for second-best. We must convert a slock to cash. Today, you can say: "Good- bye, old car. Hello, new deall" r All models! All styles! All colors! 1972 METEOR RIDEAU 4 cJoor pillared hardtop 302 V8, automatic transmission appear- ance group, H.D. battery, black hooter, fender skirls, remote con- trol mirror, power brakes, power steering, radio, H.D, suspension, wheel covers, body side mould- ing. Painled beautiful dark rollic green. STOCK NO. 2532 SO LONG '72 AT 1972 COUGAR 2 door hardtop 351 2V engine, automatic transmission, H.D. bat- fery, block healer, electric rear window defroster, power brakes, power steering, bucket scats, radio, sports console wilh clock, and competition handling pack- age. Sizzling lime green in color. STOCK NO. 256T SO LONG '72 AT Buy for a few dollars over what we paid the factory End of year discounts on all accessories SO LONG '72 SALE Over 125 new cars and trucks Must be sold by Sept. 30- 1972 MONTEGO MX STATION WAGON 9 passenger with 351 2V engine, automatic trans- mission, block heater, power brakes, power steer- Ing, radio, deluxe wheel covers, cross country ride package, carpeted floor mat, luggage rler with air deflector load and many more extras. Beautiful light blue in color with blue all vinyl Interior including notch back bench teat. COMET 4 DOOR SEDAN Wilh 250 6 cyl. engine, automatic transmission, 6.45 x IX W.S.W., H.D. baltery, block healer, exterior decor group, handling suspension age. Medium brown Tn color with ginger interior. STOCK NO. 2555 CQ1 OC SO LONG 72 AT 93 I C3 1972 F100 SPORT CUSTOM Equipped with 360 V-8, automatic transmission, H.D. shocks, H.D. boHery, block heater, gauges, 5500 G.V.W., auxiliary fuel tank, swing lok mir- rors, hub caps and 7.00 x 15 6 ply rubber. Ran- goon red in coror. STOCK NO. 2525. SO IONG 72 AT 1718 3id AVE. S. PHONE 327-5763 ;