Jack Daines, a central Alberta rodeo legend, passed away at the age of 85. (Photo courtesy of Daines Pro Ranch Rodeo)

Jack Daines, a central Alberta rodeo legend, passed away at the age of 85. (Photo courtesy of Daines Pro Ranch Rodeo)

Central Alberta rodeo legend Jack Daines dies

A Canadian rodeo legend from central Alberta has died.

Jack Daines passed away in his sleep on Dec. 28 at the age of 85. Born on May 18, 1936, Daines was the second of seven sons born to parents, Snowden and Ethel Daines.

“Jack was a cowboy from the day he was born,” his obituary reads.

“At a young age, Jack started his career as a competitor, announcer, promoter and organizer/builder. He founded and grew the Innisfail Professional Rodeo into a top rodeo in Canada. He was proud to champion a true ‘cowboys rodeo.’ Jack invented ‘Mutton Bustin’ to include kids in rodeo – an event now celebrated at rodeos throughout North America.”

In 1956 and 1957, Daines won the Canadian Novice Saddle Bronc. He was inducted into the Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame in 2000 and the Alberta Sports Hall of Fame as a Builder in 2009.

Daines started auctioneering at the Innisfail Auction Market in 1959. He eventually began announcing while competing at several rodeos.

Demands of announcing and managing the auction market became heavy and Daines retired from active rodeo competition in the early-1970s, according to his profile on the Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame website.

“The gravelly-voiced larger than life personality who loved his family and his sport leaves behind a legacy of athletes, fans, sponsors and friends who gathered every year in June to listen to Jack’s amazing stories and unique style of calling the sport he was so passionate about,” the Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame said in a Facebook post Dec. 30.

In 1961, Daines built the Daines Ranch rodeo grounds north of Innisfail, where the Daines Ranch Pro Rodeo has been held for more than five decades.

Serving on the board of the Canadian Professional Rodeo Association for four years, Daines was also instrumental in the development of the Alberta Professional Championship Rodeo Circuit, the Canadian Rodeo Hall of Fame said.

“No one was more surprised by his life success than Jack. Humbled by his beginnings, riding horseback to get his education in a one-room schoolhouse, made him truly grateful for life’s blessings,” his obituary reads.

“His greatest hope was to provide opportunities for his grandchildren and future generations, and inspire them to follow their passions. Grandpa – you succeeded.”

In lieu of flowers, if desired, Memorial Donations in Daines’ honour may be made directly to St. Marks Anglican Church, Box 6126, Innisfail, AB, T4G 1S8; to the Canadian Pro Rodeo Hall of Fame, Box 18069, RPO Shawnessy, Calgary, AB, T2Y 0K3; or to a charity of the donor’s choice.

“The memories treasured by his family, friends, and the rodeo, ranching and auction communities will live on, as Jack will always be a one a kind cowboy,” his obituary said.

“We take comfort in knowing that Jack is in heaven, pulling up in his RAM truck, wearing his Wranglers, and putting on a rodeo. We can hear Jack’s voice now, reminding us to thank the sponsors. Thank you to all the businesses and organizations for your support.”

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