Bonnie McCarroll, female rodeo rider from the early half of the last century, is famous for two things.  The first is the amazing photograph above, taken in 1915 when she was thrown from a bucking bronco — and not badly hurt.  The second is her death fourteen years later from a very similar accident.

In the old days lady bronco riders used to tie their stirrups together under the horse's belly for greater stability.  On her fatal ride, Bonnie's horse leaped up then plunged to the ground in a kind of somersault, slamming Bonnie's head against the ground and knocking her unconscious.  The horse got up again, with Bonnie still in the saddle, and Bonnie's boot got stuck in one of the tethered stirrups when a fellow rider tried to get her off the horse.  Then the horse bolted, knocking Bonnie off and dragging her around the arena with her foot still wedged in the stirrup.  She died in the hospital of brain injuries ten days later.

She was thirty-four years-old at the time — a woman of true grit.

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