On April 11-12, the 2008 Texas Rodeo Cowboy Hall of Fame, an organization dedicated to the sport of rodeo and the recognition of Texas’ contribution to that sport, inducted their newest members. Among the six contestants inducted was Logan Stevens. This is an annual event, which started in 1975. The Hall of Fame is housed in the Bell County Expo Center in Belton, Texas. The Hall contains pictures and biographies of famous Texas rodeo cowboys who have helped shape the sport from its inception until the present day.
Attending the ceremony with Logan and Gay Stevens was their two daughters and grandchildren, Karen and Dennis Townsend and children Slade and Sloan, and Kandace and Andy Smith. Friends Johnnie Bierschwale, Howard and Mary Walker of Harper, and Darrell and Mona McCall of Fredonia were also there to celebrate this exciting and honoring occasion.
Logan Stevens, born in March of 1944, has lived a life that has always revolved around horses and rodeos. His father and grandfather passed down a love for horses and the cowboy way of life. Logan’s love of horses and rodeo was evident at an early age. He broke colts for his neighbors for extra money at the early age of 12.
From the junior rodeos to the college ranks, Logan competed in almost every event from rough stock to roping. In 1964, he won the All-Around Cowboy at SWT College. He then went on to fill his permit to ride in the professional ranks. His passion at the time was bull riding. In 1965, some of his earliest RCA winnings included Bay City and the 1st round at the famed Ft. Worth Rodeo. Some of his closest friends and traveling partners were Larry Mahan, Dan Willis, Bill Sultmeier, Billy Hogan, and David Elms.
His RCA career slowed when he met Gay Baxter in May of 1965. Logan and Gay married and moved to Fredonia, where his days were filled with farming responsibilities, but his love of rodeo still existed. Amateur rodeos, peanut farming, and team roping became a more suitable lifestyle for Logan. Many late nights were spent in the arena roping and training horses. Team tying was popular in the 70’s. Logan’s nickname “Fast Knot” came as a result of his speed and quickness of this sport. He won the Legendary XIT rodeo twice. As team roping evolved from team tying, Logan made several changes in his roping and training and was soon back in the winner’s circle. Along the way came two cowgirls, Karen and Kandace, who kept him busy in the arena during the 80’s. By the mid 90’s, the girls were off on their rodeo careers and Logan got to concentrate on his team roping once again. He became a member of the United States Team Roping Assn. and won numerous championships spanning from Kentucky, Louisiana, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Texas. One of Logan’s team roping partners was the legendary Phil Lyne. They won the Lexington Championship with Logan heading and Phil heeling. Other accomplishments include 2x Texas Circuit Finalist and winner of the Pro-Am Bud Light Team Roping. Many horses owned and trained by Logan have been ridden at the National Finals Rodeo by top ropers such as Kevin Stewart, Steve Purcella, and Monty Joe Petska.
Logan attributes most of his horsemanship skills to one of his best friends and team-roping partner Johnnie Bierschwale of Harper. “Johnnie has been like a father to me, says Stevens. He has taught me most of what I know about horses. Johnnie would get them tuned up and then send them to me. When they quit working or if I was having trouble with ‘em, I would send them back for him to fix.” Bierschwale and Stevens have been roping together for over 50 years, which is a true testament to their friendship and respect for each other.
One thing dear to the Steven’s family was a roping they produced for 10 years for the West Texas Boys Ranch and West Texas Rehab Center. Each year this roping raised much needed money for the kidneys at the Boys ranch and the patients at the Rehab center. One year he invited his ole friend and traveling partner Larry Mahan to perform after the roping, which he did in his championship style.
Logan and Gay are still very involved in the horse business. They raise colts out of their stud “Jack’s Hot Rodder,” which has already produced some competitive roping and barrel horses. They continue to ranch and also raise show lambs in the Fredonia and Voca areas.