Cowboys Collect Money to Fight Cancer

Cowboys who were tough enough to wear pink were tough enough to collect over $4,800 in the fight against cancer. According to Abilene’s Wild Bill Hickock Rodeo numbers are in, and they’re good.

The Abilene rodeo, through its annual Tough Enough to Wear Pink campaign, raised $4,835 for the Elsie Brooks Memorial Cancer Fund of Dickinson County.

Fans were asked to wear pink on the Friday, August 6 performance of the rodeo to raise awareness of the fight against cancer, and the money raised was from voluntary donations.

It’s a good feeling when an event can help out the community, said Jerry Marsteller, rodeo chairman for the Wild Bill Hickok Rodeo.

“We’re glad to partner with the Elsie Brooks Fund,” he said. “Anytime we can give back to others, it’s a good thing.”

Linda Bletscher, vice-president of the Fund, agreed. “It’s huge,” she said. “It helps so many people, and they are so thankful.”

Bletscher has been a volunteer with the Fund for more than five years, and loves the work. “It is a pleasure to be involved. It’s so humbling to be able to help people. (Having cancer) is scary enough, and to be able to help people is good.”

The rodeo has been partnering with the Elsie Brooks Fund since 2008, and since then, has raised over $42,000 for the fund. The fund grants monies confidentially to those undergoing cancer treatment who are Dickinson County residents.

For more information on the Elsie Brooks Fund, contact Bletscher at 785.263.2078.

The 75th anniversary of the Wild Bill Hickok Rodeo took place August 4-7. Next year’s rodeo will be August 3-6, 2022. For more information on the rodeo, visit the website at

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Representatives of the Elsie Brooks Memorial Cancer Fund organization stand with representatives of the Wild Bill Hickok Rodeo during “big check” presentation which took place August 6 at the Abilene rodeo. The final amount raised by the rodeo for the foundation was $4835, which was not fully represented on the big check. Photo by Connie Stillwagon. From left to right: Brooks board member Linda Duncan; rodeo chairman Jerry Marsteller; rodeo treasurer Jeff Anderes, and Brooks vice-president Linda Bletscher.