Rodney William Kirkbride passed away November 29, 2022, in Cheyenne, Wyoming. He was 93, and was born December 14, 1928, in Cheyenne to James and Betty Kirkbride.
Rod lived his entire life on Cattail Ranch, established in 1889 by his grandfather Alex D. Kirkbride. He attended Cheyenne Central High School and boarded in town with a minister due to the distance of the ranch from town. Rod also attended the University of Wyoming for two years. He was enrolled at UW in 1949 when the “Blizzard of ‘49” hit southern Wyoming during Christmas vacation and was two weeks late getting to class.
Rod married Mae Irene Shores in 1952, who also lived most of her life on the ranch. He was a volunteer member of the Laramie County Fire District #2 for many years.
Rod was fond of building and creating things, and often put things to a use for which they were not intended. Most of the gate latches on the ranch were made using a forge and anvil, or a welder, and are unique to each gate. He acquired his father’s fondness for buildings. While he built new buildings as needed, he was determined to preserve the original buildings of the ranch. The horse barn is original and is thought to have been built even before the house. Several buildings were purchased and moved from other locations, often with horse teams.
Rod was a genial host to visitors, often from out of state, and sometimes from foreign countries. He hosted many students from France who wanted to experience the ranch life for a summer. He could entertain people with many stories about the early days of ranching, historical incidents and infamous people.
Rod is survived by his wife of 70 years, Mae; sister Phyllis (Auburn) Dowdy; his daughters Barbara (Mike) Crowl of Cheyenne, and Jean (James) Doyle, and grandson Robert of Saint Paul, MN; nieces and nephews Karen Johnson, Karla Stultz, Evan Dowdy, Alan Dowdy, Scot Dowdy, Joy Medberry, Douglas Grove, Nancy Gale, Carol Grunsky, Cynthia Grove and John Grove.