Tragedy at the National Western Stock Show: One of the world's leading professional bull riders was fatally injured at the Denver event Tuesday by a bull called Hard Times. Witnesses say Mason Lowe, 25, was thrown from the back of the bull, which stomped him when he was on the ground, the New York Daily News reports. Professional Bull Riders spokesman Andrew Giangola tells USA Today that the bull stomped Lowe's chest. "He suffered massive heart, heart valve, and aorta damage and died of these injuries at Denver Health," Giangola says.
Lowe "was thrown off the bull and while he was on the ground the back legs stomped him in the chest while he trying to get up," witness Gerardo Alvarez tells CBS 4. "When he got up he immediately grabbed his chest and stumbled over to the exit and then fell to the ground again grabbing his chest before he could get out of the area." Lowe, a Missouri native ranked No. 18 in the world, was in his seventh season in the dangerous sport. "The loss of Mason is devastating to us all," PBR CEO Sean Gleason said in a statement. "Our thoughts, prayers, and deepest condolences are with his family and wife Abbey." A fundraiser for the family was held Wednesday during the event's final night at the Denver Coliseum. (Last year, a rodeo chairman was badly injured when an event went wrong.)