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THE EXPO CENTER BOARD OF DIRECTORS RELEASED A STATEMENT AFTER RANCH BRONC RIDER, SKEE BURKES DIED IN THE ARENA DOING WHAT HE LOVED.

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September 10, 2023 -Abilene, TX – The Expo Center Board of Directors and staff regretfully inform our community of a death during the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association (PRCA) Rodeo performance on Saturday, September 9, 2023.

Skee Burkes, a contestant, succumbed to injuries suffered when he was bucked off the bronc while riding during the Ranch Bronc riding event. Burkes entered the rodeo through the United Professional Rodeo Association.

Unlike the rodeo-affiliated association of the PRCA, the United Professional Rodeo Association combines several long-standing successful regional associations with great rodeo history across the southern United States.

Our thoughts and prayers are with Burkes’ family, the spectators, and the rodeo officials in the arena.

For information regarding Burkes and the UPRA, please contact (903) 873-6692.


Skee’s Mother shared this message on Facebook.

“As many of you may have heard by now Skee was in a Bronc riding accident at the Abilene rodeo last night and died in the arena. Our hearts are broken and we thank you for your prayers.”

“From the day he was born all I ever knew to expect from Skee was the unexpected. This was definitely unexpected. He was the most talented, hilariously funny, artistic, musical, retro package I have ever known. His love and appreciation for good things ran deep – from Elvis and Bob Dylan to authentic vintage era anything. He was the most creative person I have ever known and expressed it in ways only he could. He was the most unique, broke the mold person most of us have ever met. Oh those memories.”

“He loved Jesus and led several people to the Lord, including his bus driver Rob Simmons, who was saved and Baptized with Skee at his side at the Henrietta Cowboy church. We will never forget his “Hey There Delilah” (Tom Hawkins) rendition at church.”

“He was in such a good path – oilfield supervisor, so excited about his leather business and opening his own shop soon. One thing about Skee – he was MEMORABLE. If you ever met you – you never forgot him.”

“Services are pending. Burial will be in Matador with memorial planned at the Henrietta Cowboy Church the afternoon of Sunday, September 17.”

“Thank you for your love for our Skee Boy. ❤️❤️❤️
– Dee Ann Littlefield

Several of Skee’s friends shared their condolences as well.

Our condolences to the family of this precious cowboy, may the memories comfort you forever.

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