Cowboy's Death On Roosevelt Lake Stuns Rodeo Community

This photograph of Wyatt Althoff as a child competing in a local rodeo event has hung in the Payson Roundup's lobby for years.

This photograph of Wyatt Althoff as a child competing in a local rodeo event has hung in the Payson Roundup's lobby for years. |

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A boating accident that killed a beloved cowboy on Roosevelt Lake this weekend has shocked the rodeo community.

Wyatt Althoff, 26, was riding on a boat with eight friends Saturday afternoon when he fell overboard. It is unclear what led to the accident, according to the Gila County Sheriff’s Office. On Monday, divers recovered Wyatt’s body.

Althoff’s family described Wyatt as a kind, positive person that was practically born with a lasso in his hand.

Wyatt roped up several local and national rodeo titles and competed in Friday’s Payson Ausust Doins’, tying for second in the first round of tie-down roping. He was set to compete in team roping Sunday afternoon with Trevor ‘T.J.’ Brown, who was also on the boat Saturday.

News of Wyatt’s death spread quickly over the weekend, hundreds of people commenting on Wyatt’s Facebook profile and that of his family and friends.

“God must have needed a helluva cowboy up there because he got one of the best hands he could have ever possibly got,” posted one person on Wyatt’s Facebook page.

Read the full story in Tuesday's Roundup.

Comments

Ellen McCoy 8 months ago

There are no words...only DEEP aching, endless tears, and silent prayers, Then more of the same as TIME slowly moves in to lessen the sharp, raw edges of helplessness over God's demand for a ropin', ridin', cowboy. Must be one Hell of a rodeo scheduled for Heaven! R I P Wyatt Altoff.

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