Four-time Wrangler NFR Qualifier JoJo LeMond has won two go-round buckles from the NFR and many other top rodeo buckles that he could be wearing, but those aren’t what you’ll see on the end of his belt. LeMond sports his 1996 San Antonio Reserve Champion USTRC buckle he won with his late grandpa Floyd LeMond, who passed away on Aug. 7, 2018, at the age of 94.
“He was my best friend until I got married,” LeMond said. “He and I had done everything together every day. Everything you can imagine—he was my partner.”
LeMond was just 14 years old when he won this buckle with his then 72-year-old grandpa.
“He had an old van, like the van Lane Frost drove,” LeMond laughed. “My dad was laying back there on the bed and my grandpa and I were talking in the front. We were driving about 15 miles an hour down the interstate after the roping and a group of bicyclists passed us and my dad said, ‘My God, you guys are going to have to quit talking and start driving.’ We were just pretty excited that we won something there.”
LeMond attributes everything he does and has to his grandpa.
“When he was on his death bed this year, I told him he was my hero and that I would wear the buckle that he and I won together for the rest of my life,” LeMond said. “A great, big ol’ grin came across his face and a big teardrop ran down his face. I haven’t taken it off since.
“He was the greatest man I’ve ever met and gotten to know. He was kind-hearted and told the truth about everything. He never had an enemy. He loved horses and the cowboy life. Everything that I know is absolutely from him and my dad. He raised a bunch of good cowboys and rodeo cowboys. I honor him for what he’s given us. He loved his family and I think he was the greatest thing since sliced bread. I want to carry that tradition on.”