Like something out of an Earnest Hemingway novel, a world-ranked bull rider died on Tuesday night from injuries he sustained during an event at the National Western Stock Show in Denver, Colorado, according to the Professional Bull Riders Association (PBR).
In the prime of his career, Mason Lowe of Exeter, Missouri, had been riding professionally for seven years.
The event he was scheduled to compete in is called the PBR Chute Out. It’s a test of how long a rider can last on top of a bull that is out of control, noted KSTU, a FOX News-affiliated station in Salt Lake City, Utah.
Lowe was just 25 years old.
“We are deeply saddened to report that Mason Lowe passed away this evening following injuries sustained at the PBR event in Denver,” CEO Sean Gleason of the PBR said in a statement on the association’s website.
“The entire PBR and National Western sports family extends our heartfelt condolences and deepest sympathies to Mason’s wife Abbey and his family.”
Gleason did not provide details pertaining to Lowe’s sudden passing.
Our condolences and deepest sympathies go out to the family, friends, and fans of Mason Lowe. May the memory of Mason stay with our minds and his passion carry on through our hearts. pic.twitter.com/37cnHRT7sC
— Team Cooper Tire (@TeamCooperTire) January 16, 2019
I’m still at a loss of words but what I can say is Mason Lowe I will always cherish our friendship and never forget you. Rest easy partner pic.twitter.com/A9PN2PZ1dI
— Austin ‘Sure Shot’ Shirley♠️♥️♣️♦️ (@AustinShirley3) January 16, 2019
My colleague and I met and photographed Mason on Monday night, in a back room at the rodeo arena. We spoke for a bit about a cowboy’s creased jeans, and his love of the sport. He didn’t tell me he was ranked 18th in the world. https://t.co/yG9LTSz3eT
— julieturkewitz (@julieturkewitz) January 16, 2019
“Professional bull riding is a fierce, rough, and grueling sport with roots deeply imbedded in American culture. It’s America’s original extreme sport,” the PBR website explains.
“In just two decades, the dream of 20 bull riders has grown into a global sports sensation that has awarded more than $140 million in prize money.”
Lowe had shared the dangers of bull riding in an interview on PBR’s website in 2016.
In that interview, Lowe said, “You can’t really think about it when you’re out there. Once you start thinking about what the bull’s going to do next, that’s when you’re a second too late.”
Elizabeth Economou is a former CNBC staff writer and adjunct professor. Follow her on Twitter.