This year, I was assigned to help the Heavy Horse Pull. We had a competitor—Rocky Dempsey—from Fort McMurray. When I first talked to him, just before Stampede, he had been evacuated from Fort McMurray. He didn’t know if he was going to be able to compete. He’d been training for months before the fires and, when he fled, he wasn’t able to bring the harnesses he needed for the competition. Ever since he was a kid, he’d dreamed of competing at the Calgary Stampede.
He decided not to give up. He overcame so much to be able to compete in the Stampede after all he had been through. It was his lifelong dream come true.