Bobby Brooks Kramer spent her entire life riding and training horses.
The nationally renowned cowgirl grew up on a Montana ranch and was one of the first women to begin riding rodeo broncs for prize money. In her 30s, Kramer completed a 140-mile, one-rider/one-horse endurance race from Billings to Miles City, Mont. At 76, she rode 50 miles in the Great Montana Centennial Cattle Drive.
After World War II, she and her husband, Corwin “Bud” Kramer, formed the Hanging Diamond A horse ranch. They earned money capturing thousands of open range ponies, breaking them and selling them as riding or draft horses. Kramer attended the Billings Business College and graduated from Beauty Operators School. She received her private pilot’s license in 1964 and used an airplane to “round up far flung horses.” The Kramers, and their adopted son Gary Crowder, later opened the Kramer Crowder Horse Ranch. Bud died in 1979.
The photography exhibit, “Bobby Brooks Kramer: A Montana Legend,” was shown at the Western Heritage Center in Billings last summer. Kramer was also featured in two documentaries (“I’ll Ride That Horse” and “The Last Stronghold”). A lifetime member of the American Quarter Horse Association, the Montana Quarter Horse Association and the Montana Cutting Horse Association, she was inducted into the National Cowgirl Museum and Hall of Fame in 2000.
Kramer died on Jan. 5 of natural causes. She was 91.