Rodeo crowd holds benefit for famous rodeo clown

Author: Stephanie Serna, Reporter, sserna@ksat.com
Published On: Jun 15 2012 10:44:15 PM CDT   Updated On: Jun 15 2012 12:53:12 PM CDT
SAN ANTONIO -

After entertaining the crowds at the San Antonio Stock Show and Rodeo for the past 30 years, the rodeo community is giving back to one of its most beloved rodeo clowns.

Leon Coffee, a famous barrelman and rodeo clown, is used to brining smiles to the rodeo crowd but on Friday night a crowd packed the Tejas Rodeo Arena in Bulverde for him.

"It's a little overwhelming," said Coffee. "To know that I touched that many lives to the point that they care this much to come out here."

Leon is recovering from spinal meningitis and according to doctors, he almost didn't make it.

And although Leon was looking well on Friday, he and his family have been dealing with mounting medical bills.

That's why his rodeo family came together to hold a benefit for him.

"It's just been amazing," said Roxann Cotugno, Leon Coffee Benefit Organizer. "With all the love, people calling, talking to me, asking me questions, wanting to donate, just wanting to do anything and everything to help him."

The benefit, complete with a bull riding competition, a silent auction and live music was put together to help Leon get his medical bills paid off.

"Everybody knows him and he knows everybody and he's a wonderful guy," said Jerry Lynn Lansford from Jourdanton. "And, it's so great for everybody to get together and give back to him because he's brought so much joy not only to cowboys, but to people in general."

The Leon Coffee Benefit Calf Roping event is scheduled for Saturday morning at 9 a.m.

Organizers will still be accepting donations.