Garry “Reride” Miller 59, beloved rodeo clown and barrelman of Laveen, Ariz., passed away July 20, 2009. Services were held Aug. 4 In Surprise, Ariz..
Garry, born July 11, 1950, grew up in Flint, Mich., and graduated from Southwestern High School in 1968. He served in the Vietnam War and then went to college and earned a bachelor of arts in industrial management from the University of Phoenix. He then went to work for AiResearch, Garrett, Allied Signal and Honeywell as an aerospace engineer and has been with them for the last 33 years. His rodeo career started when he was 26, winning his first bull riding championship in 1985. He competed in bull riding, team roping, calf roping and the wild horse races. After a career ending injury riding bulls he started work as a rodeo clown at the National Senior Pro Rodeo in Westword, Ariz., in 1994.
Garry has since worked in over 300 rodeos in the last 15 years making it his second career. Some of the highlights are the National senior Pro Rodeo National Finals (2004), PBR in Vernal Utah, Bill Pickett Rodeo Assn. National Finals (2001, 2002), Turquoise Circuit Finals bullfighter (1998), International Pro Rodeo Assn., SPRA Finals Clown and Barrelman, (1996), Arizona High School Rodeo Assn. Finals Bullfighter (1999), All Indian Pro Rodeo Cowboy Assn., Cowboys for Kids Celebrity Rodeo, EEHI Charity Rodeo, Red Ryder Rodeo Roundup in Pagosa Springs CO (15 years), Gilbert (Ariz.) Days IPRA Rodeo, National Senior Pro Rodeo in Wickenburg Ariz., Prada Del Sol in Scottsdale, Ariz., (2009) and many more.
He became a card member of the IPRA in 1995 and the PRCA in 2002.
He was a proud father to daughter Kelly (Todd) Fluke of South Carolina and son Brent (Julie) Miller of Surprise; and a very proud grandfather to Taylor, Gregory, Alyssa, Zachary and Peyton. He is also survived by his mom, Dot, of Tucson, Ariz., and brother Greg who lives in Maine.
He will be greatly missed by the many friends he made over the years.