MCALESTER, Okla. (WJW) – An Oklahoma teenager has died after a bull riding accident on Saturday night.
According to the local newspaper McAlester News-Capitol, 16-year-old Derby Gearheart was competing in the open bull riding competition during the Ward Rodeo Company Series Finals in McAlester, Oklahoma.
The newspaper reports that Gearheart was stepped on by the bull he was riding when he was thrown off. It is also reported that he was wearing a helmet and protective gear at the time of the incident.
After the incident, Gearheart was taken to the McAlester Regional Health Center.
On what would have been Gearheart’s 17th birthday, a celebration of life will be held Monday night, according to local news station KXII. An account to Gearheart’s family was also set up at First Bank in Coalgate, Oklahoma.
A Facebook post from Coalgate Public Schools on Wednesday says, “OUR HEARTS HURT. We have suffered a loss to our school community. This loss is sure to raise many emotions, concerns, and questions for our entire school. especially our students.”
The post says the school district will offer trained professionals and other resources to help students with their grief.
“We are saddened by the loss to our school community and will make every effort to support our students and staff,” the post says.
According to the Facebook page, Coalgate Public Schools was closed Friday for Derby Gearheart’s services.