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Submitted Photo Wayne Herman rides a bronc in the 1995 National Rodeo Finals in Las Vegas this undated photo.

Hall calls Herman: Local cowboy, champion bareback rider to be inducted into ProRodeo Hall of Fame

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Wayne Herman received a phone call Tuesday that he thought was an April Fool’s Day prank.

It was no joke.

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Herman, a 50-year-old Dickinson native, learned he and three other cowboys, would headline the ProRodeo Hall of Fame’s 2014 induction class. They’ll be inducted on Aug. 9 in Colorado Springs, Colo.

“It took me by surprise,” he said with a laugh. “It was on April Fool’s Day, so I called the number back to make sure it wasn’t an April Fool’s Day joke.”

The hall of fame is also inducting cowboys Pete Grubb, Glen O’Neill and Byron Walker, two-time world champion bullfighter Miles Hare and Spring Fling, one of just two horses to be honored as both a bareback and saddle bronc horse of the year.

When Herman realized the news wasn’t a prank, he said he felt it was a great honor.

Herman qualified for the National Finals Rodeo 11 times, had six top-five finishes and earned $856,490 in his career. He won the PRCA bareback riding world championship in 1992. In 1991, he won the NFR average title and was the world runner-up.

“It is quite an honor to be included in that group that’s there,” said Herman, who lives near Halliday. “It makes me feel honored and humbled at the same time. (Getting into the hall of fame) was in the back of my mind, thinking it was a possibility someday. But I didn’t expect it.”

Herman retired from bareback riding in 1998 after an injury. He didn’t qualify for the NFR that year, but felt it was the right time to step away.

Prior to the retirement, Herman had experienced plenty of injuries, breaking his legs multiple times.

“I experienced more than my fair share of injuries and our youngest son was five at the time,” he said. “I decided that I would be done. I always swore I would be done while I could still rodeo instead of people wondering why I didn’t quit earlier. I wanted to be home more too.

Herman admitted it wasn’t easy leaving the sport of rodeo.

“I had to stay away from it for a while to get weaned off,” he said with a laugh.

After his rodeo career ended, Herman stayed in the western North Dakota and eastern Montana area. He managed grain elevators before starting his own business — Herman Trucking LLC — in the Oil Patch.

Though Herman hasn’t competed for more than 15 years, he hasn’t left the sport completely.

He still travels to the National High School Finals Rodeo and NFR, and hosts camps for young cowboys.

The traveling aspect has been very kind to Herman. He has traveled throughout the United States and Canada. He hasn’t been to every state in the U.S., but said he’s close.

“The upper New England states, rodeo is a lot lighter,” Herman said. “But I’ve been to upper New York to northern British Columbia, south Texas, southern Florida, southern California and everywhere in between. It wasn’t all 50 states, but it most of them and most of Canada. We can go to many different states, and we know people and we know them quite well.”

However, through his years and travels in professional rodeo, Herman has one person he couldn’t thank enough — his wife Connie. The two have been married for 32 years.

“Without her, this wouldn’t have been possible,” he said. “She helped me through all the ups and downs. I got to give her a lot of credit for this.”

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Royal McGregor
(701) 456-1214
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