Lane Clyde Frost was an American professional rodeo cowboy who specialized in bull riding and competed in the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA). He was the 1987 PRCA World Champion bull rider and was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in 1990.
He was the only rider to qualify on Red Rock, the 1987 PRCA Bucking Bull of the Year, and the 1990 ProRodeo Hall of Fame bull. He died at a local hospital after being injured by the bull Takin’ Care of Business during the ride at the 1989 Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo.
Lane Frost Was how Old When He Died?
It doesn’t seem like that long ago to Elsie Frost. Lane, her middle son, died on July 30, 1989, at the Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo, at the age of 25. The horn of a bull named “Takin’ Care of Business” smashed into his back, fracturing numerous ribs and severing an artery. Lane Frost rode the bull and scored an 86, despite his insignificance now.
“It doesn’t seem like it’s been that long, but I know it has,” Elsie Frost said. As the 123rd CFD Rodeo begins, it’s tough not to remember the significance of that fateful day in 1989. It’s difficult to miss for people that come to CFD. A Lane Frost statue is in front of the CFD Old West Museum in Frontier Park.
His name and legacy are as well-known to those participating in or familiar with rodeo as Tom Brady is to the NFL or LeBron James is to the NBA. Even if you aren’t a rodeo expert or enthusiast, you’ve probably heard of Lane Frost because of the 1994 film “8 Seconds,” which dramatized his life.
“That movie sealed him into history, and it also did a lot for the future of bull riding,” said Joe Frost, Frost’s second cousin and a professional bull rider himself. Lane Frost died before Joe Frost was born.
“I’ve been riding bulls professionally since 2011, and that is the greatest and biggest movie about rodeo and bull riding. My generation grew up seeing that film, which motivated us to pursue the rodeo-cowboy lifestyle.”
Elsie Frost replied, “Describe legacy to me,” when asked to describe her son’s legacy. “8 Seconds,” she added, did a lot to communicate the narrative and respect her kid.
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It’s a Family Affair.
Rodeo was a part of the Frost family long before Lane Frost became involved in it. Lane’s father, Clyde Frost, was a bareback and saddle bronc rider who, according to Elsie Frost, qualified for five of the first six National Finals Rodeos. The inaugural NFR took place in 1959.
“Clyde never tried to persuade (Lane) to do anything in rodeo,” Elsie Frost explained. “We didn’t want him to be a bull rider because we assumed he’d outgrow it and pursue something different. But he’s always enjoyed bull riding since he was a baby.”
Lane Frost rode his first bull when he was nine years old, but he didn’t ride them frequently until he was in his twenties. Elsie Frost recalled a period when her son considered following in his father’s footsteps and taking up saddle bronc riding. That was short-lived.
“Clyde found a practice horse, and Lane rode him three times,” she explained. “Dad, I don’t think I want to do this the third time,” Lane replied. That is an impossible fall.”
Lane Frost became a member of the Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association in 1982 and won the world bull riding championship in 1987. He was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in 1990, the CFD Hall of Fame in 2003, and the Oklahoma City Rodeo Hall of Fame in 2008.
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But Did You Know Lane Frost Was Also Useful on The Other Side of The Rodeo Arena?
He married into a roping family when he married Kellie Kyle in 1984. Lane Frost learned a lot from Rick Kyle, Kellie Kyle’s brother, who was a tie-down roper. In fact, Elsie Frost stated that her son competed in tie-down roping (then known as calf roping) at CFD in 1988.
“I remember him calling and saying, ‘I know I’m not ready for that level of calf roping,’” Elsie Frost recalled. “He roped a good calf and almost missed making the cut” (finals). He was pleased with how he performed.” Elsie Frost also mentioned that her son liked team roping.
“He liked both the calf roping and team roping, but if they interfered with the bull riding, Lane would opt for the bull riding,” Elsie Frost laughed. “I’m sure he’d done more of that as he got older since he enjoyed them both.”
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Keeping His Memory Alive
Cody Lambert, one of Lane Frost’s traveling companions, invented the protective vest that bull riders and other roughstock event competitors use not long after his death. Stetson Frost, Lane’s nephew, and Elsie Frost’s grandson oversee the Lane Frost Brand, which includes caps, shirts, stickers, and even a Lane Frost action figure.
“We do around 30 orders a day, 3,000 orders a month,” Stetson Frost told Ada, Oklahoma news station KTEN recently. “My deal is that I’m proud to be doing it. That’s an honor for me to do it. I am honored to be his nephew. I’ve always wanted to do something to pay tribute to him.”
Elsie and Clyde Frost run a Bible ministry and go to young rodeos and cowboy churches to tell Lane’s story. Lane Frost has inspired songs and poetry, and countless people have been named after him once their parents learned about his story.
“I assumed that after 30 years, no one would remember Lane Frost. “Wow, was I ever wrong,” Elsie Frost exclaimed.