‘Yellowstone’ Cowboy Buster Welch Dies — Texas Cowboy Hall of Famer Was 94
Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame horse trainer Buster Welch died on Sunday (June 12) at age 94. The cutting expert's death comes months after a new generation learned of him after his appearance on Season 4 of Yellowstone.
During Ep. 5 ("Under a Blanket of Red," airdate Nov. 28, 2021), Jimmy (Jefferson White) awakens on a bench at the 6666 Ranch to find two older cowboys having a conversation. One is actor Barry Corbin, and the other, older man is Welch. Still new to cowboying, Jimmy doesn't know this until he steps out of the bar he's in and encounters a ranch hand who asks if he took good notes.
"There are three Gods in Texas: the Almighty himself, Buster Welch and George Strait. You just met one of them." the ranch hand says.
"That's not George Strait," Jimmy replies, to which the rancher answers, "I hope the good Lord gave you a big d--k Jimmy, because he sure shorted you on brains."
The Paramount Network show broke news of Welch's death on social media on Sunday.
"We're saddened to hear of the passing of Buster Welch," notes the caption. "You might recognize him from Yellowstone season 4, but the horse trainer and cutting expert was a legend long before that. May he rest in peace."
Welch's career as a trainer of cutting horses began in the early 1950s, and he'd go on to train many championship-caliber horses during his illustrious career. He won many awards for his groundbreaking style and success and was inducted into the Texas Cowboy Hall of Fame, National Cutting Horse Association Hall of Fame and American Quarter Horse Hall of Fame, among others.
He lived and worked on both the famous King Ranch and 6666 Ranch at points in his career. His wife, Sheila, preceded him in death.
Several cast members recognized Welch's importance to the sport upon hearing of his death. Ian Bohen simply wrote, "Legend" under a tweet from the show. Yellowstone creator Taylor Sheridan helped explain his contribution with more detail.
"A legend was lost today," he begins. "Buster Welch rode into the sunset this morning, leaving behind a legacy that changed the performance horse world forever. He will be missed and we will be forever grateful for all his wisdom and his contributions to the quarter horse world. He was a cowboy. He was a showman. He was a friend to all who knew him."