Rodeo rider, 19, dies after getting trampled at New Jersey event

Reuters News
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Posted: May 29, 2016 6:02 PM

(Reuters) - A 19-year-old rider was killed when he fell off his horse and got trampled at a New Jersey rodeo, according to the teen's university and media reports.

Coy Lutz was competing at the season opener of the Cowtown Rodeo in Pilesgrove, New Jersey, on Saturday evening when the accident happened, the University of Tennessee at Martin said in a statement.

Lutz, from Howard, Pennsylvania, was majoring in criminal justice at the university and was also on the school's rodeo team, the school said.

Rodeo owner Grant Harris told local news website NJ.com that Lutz was competing in the bareback bronc event when the horse, named H3, bucked him off. After he hit the ground, the horse trampled him, the website said.

Staff were able to separate him from the horse and emergency workers rushed him to hospital where he was pronounced dead, NJ.com reported.

"Cowtown Rodeo and The Harris Family extend our heartfelt and sincere condolences to the Lutz Family for the tragic loss of their son, Coy," the Rodeo said in a post on its Facebook page.

Harris told the website that Lutz was the first cowboy to die from injuries suffered while competing at the event. The rodeo was established in 1929, according to its website.

The bareback event requires riders to stay on their bucking horse with nothing more than a leather rigging and no saddle for several seconds. The Rodeo's website says "bareback riders endure more abuse, suffer more injuries and carry away more long-term damage than all other rodeo cowboys."

(Reporting by Curtis Skinner in San Francisco; Editing by Sandra Maler)