Fond Memories of Former Co-Workers

Having been involved with the Stampede for over 50 years in the capacity of both an employee and volunteer, I have some many memories of the Stampede.

Foremost are my memories of four early employees. Each contributed greatly to the promotion and success of the Stampede; each one I had the pleasure of working with and sharing their memories.

Dick Cosgrave was a pioneer of chuckwagon racing and went on to be a Rodeo Arena Director until his retirement in 1970. I shall always treasure the stories of early racing and calamities when rules were few and far between.

Josh Henthorn had been a Rodeo and Wagon Announcer from 1923 until his death in 1965. Who could forget his booming voice and timeless announcements, such as “Would a (any prominent citizen would do) come to the judge’s stand, your suitcase is leaking!” He would make this and other announcements daily and it always caused much laughter.

Walter (Squib) Ross came on staff in 1919 and never really retired. Squib who died just prior to the 1965 Stampede, was in charge of the purchasing, publicity, advertising, all work crews, the entire midway, and was the Assistant General Manager. He was a wealth of Stampede history. My one regret is I didn’t have more time with him.

Lloyd Turner, who had vast experience in the development of hockey, came to the Stampede as an expert in this field. He managed the Victoria Arena and then the Stampede Corral after its construction in 1950. He retired in 1964 at the age of 80 but stayed on as a Sports Consultant and died in his 90’s.

In keeping with this year’s theme “We’re Greatest Together,” I think back to the dirty thirties when the Stampede opened its gates and grandstand seating free to a large number of Calgarians and the fact we helped bringing a little joy to their otherwise hard lives.

Indeed, “We’re Greatest Together.”

Bill Tidball