Congratulations to the Whatakid of the month, Laramie Chadwick! This eighteen-year-old senior is a force to be reckoned with. In the arena, he competes in tie down, team roping, and reining cow horse. He also recently added trap shooting to his list of events. Of all of his events, tie down is his favorite.
Laramie currently rides two different horses. Gomez, his main horse, is a bay horse that Laramie rides for tie down and reining. His team roping horse, Little Wayne, is actually borrowed from a friend of the Chadwick’s, Michael Akins. Michael is also one of Laramie’s tie down coaches who helps him in the arena. Laramie says, “I have been lucky to ride good horses that we have raised, borrowed or had trained for him to ride in and out of the arena.”
Laramie remarked on one of his favorite moments with Gomez: “A long time ago, my Dad and I were working a pen of cattle with our pastor and his crew. I was around eight. They told me I couldn’t get off of my horse for anything. Well, I had to go to the restroom really bad, so I just stood up and took care of business off the side of Gomez. I mean I did what I was told. My dad and my pastor said I could not get off my horse and I didn’t.” Wendy Chadwick, Laramie’s mom noted, “Laramie’s cattle working ways have been in a few sermons about being respectful and being obedient; no matter what the circumstance.
“He has literally been horseback since birth,” mentioned Wendy. Brent Chadwick, Laramie’s dad, was a team roper when Laramie was a baby. So, Laramie attended his first US roping event at three weeks old. He began rodeoing at age four and hasn’t stopped since. He also has spent most of his life working cattle with his dad and church family.
Region rodeos are Laramie’s favorite but “all of my rodeos are pretty good,” remarked Laramie. He has been really successful in his events. He qualified for state in tie down and reining cow horse his freshman and sophomore year.
However, Laramie’s junior year held a lot of sacrifice and bumps in the road. He was born with a hip impingement, which was unknown until the beginning of his junior season. “They gave me a choice,” Laramie said. “I could have the surgery and then go through the recovery, or I could not have the surgery, keep rodeoing, but risk further injury/pain which would keep me from rodeoing later in life.” Laramie chose to have the surgery in order to continue rodeoing in the long run. So, his junior season was spent undergoing extensive hip surgery which left him unable to ride for almost a year.
Brent has been the region president for the past three years, as well as a member of the state board since Laramie was in sixth grade. Wendy mentioned, “Laramie had to endure long weekends at the rodeo last season but was an excellent arena helper even on crutches.”
Laramie did have an amazing junior year even with the injury. About six weeks before state, Laramie began training for trap shooting. He was given the opportunity to join the Texas team and finished in the top 25 at NHSRA finals where Texas and Texas Boys were the National Champions for 2019.
In addition to rodeo, Laramie has been involved in a lot of arena and ministry events at his church, Cross Brand Cowboy Church, which is located in Tyler, Texas. In fact, he has been an American Fellowship of Cowboy Church “Cowboy Camp” counselor or clinician assistant for the last 5 years. He loves to share the Word with other kids involved in the Western Heritage World.
Laramie is known in the Texas High School Rodeo world as “Batman.”. When he was younger, Laramie watched the old school Batman movies with his parents. From there, Batman just stuck, and he has been collecting Batman memorabilia from signs to old collectible toys. His favorite items are the Batman t-shirts which he wears under his official rodeo shirts to each rodeo. You can always find Laramie in something Batman every day.
Dwight Hathaway was someone that Laramie counts as his hero. Papa D, as the Chadwick’s called him, was like a grandfather to Laramie. “Being a homeschooled kid, he spends a lot of time with grownups,” Wendy said. “Dwight always guided Laramie through everything from hunting to horses to how be a gentleman. He was an old PRCA Steer Wrestler, so he knew the rodeo world and the horse world.”
Unfortunately, Dwight unexpectedly passed away in August of 2019. “He was the one I looked up to the most,” said Laramie. “He was goofy as can be. He was one of those guys that even if he was trying to be serious, you couldn’t look at him serious. You were always laughing at him or with him.” Laramie also talked about how giving Papa D was: “Dwight would give you the shirt off of his back, but more than that he was just a good Christian man. He taught me how to be a Christian cowboy gentleman in this crazy world.”
“He was a real good role model. Whenever he left us here on earth, he left a big legacy,” Laramie said about Dwight.
“Treat others how you would treat yourself.” This is Laramie’s motto on life. This saying became his motto because of his buddy Dwight. “He was always kind to other people and it’s just hard to be mean to someone who is being so kind to you,” Laramie said.
When asked why he rodeos, Laramie responded saying, “Because I love it. It’s the cowboy way.” Rodeo has taught Laramie a lot about being patient and humble in life. In addition to life, Laramie has also gained a lot of friends through rodeo. “Since I am homeschooled, all of my friends my age are through rodeo. Whenever I am working or piddling around the house, I am usually hanging out with old farts that always try and give me knowledge about the old days,” Laramie said. Laramie is grateful for the Rodeo Family Life we have in Texas High School Rodeo. “I have lifelong friends and a ‘rodeo family’ because of THSRA. I can’t imagine my life without those who have been with me during these rodeo years,” Laramie stated.
In the future, Laramie plans to rodeo in Junior College and then onto Tarleton or Texas Tech. He is considering a degree in kinesiology and then going on to become either a licensed physical therapist or choosing a military career. He does know that no matter what career path he chooses, horses and roping will always be a part of his life.
Laramie is honored to be this month’s Whatakid! Of course, HE LOVES EATING WHATABURGER…