First Makenna Elrod Seiler roping competition honors life of Robb Elementary victim

All of the money raised will go towards the Makenna Elrod Seiler Foundation, a 501(c)3.

UVALDE – The family of Makenna Elrod Seiler came together for a roping competition and scholarship presentation in honor of the 10-year-old who was killed at Robb Elementary.

Hundreds of cowboys and cowgirls saddled up for a two-day roping competition in the Uvalde County Fairplex.

All in honor of a brown-eyed girl.

“When I thought about having a roping I knew that those saddles and buckles would last forever, long beyond us,” Chris Seiler, Makenna’s dad, said. “And it’s my hope that in a hundred years, someone might find one of those in a barn and see her name and speak her name”

Makenna Elrod Seiler, the two-stepping horse lover, he wrote a song about called Makenna’s Eyes.

“People are gonna hear her name and know a little bit about the life of Makenna,” Seiler said.

Makenna loved the color purple, and butterflies, and looked just like her momma April Elrod.

This time last year, April’s yard was filled with Makenna’s friends for her 10th birthday party.

“Some of the other angels were there and Makenna, so it’s a hard day today thinking back a year ago. But it’s a good day to be here, honoring her and remembering her,” Elrod said.

They know Makenna would love seeing the arena filled with ropers and the parking lot packed with BBQ pits.

Even more, she’d be honored that her legacy is helping another young woman’s dreams of college come true.

“Young lady, that scholarship is $20,000,” the announcer said as the check was presented to Carlee Martinez.

That money will help the 17-year-old roper on her way to an associate’s degree at Southwest Texas Junior College in Uvalde.

“Each time I back in the box, a little bit of Makenna will be with me. So as long as I’m going, Makenna’s memory will be too,” Martinez said.

The customized belt buckles, spurs, and saddles will be given away to Saturday’s champions from the roping and BBQ events.

Seiler says he is bringing back this event every year on the Saturday closest to Makenna’s birthday on April 19th.

He hopes next year’s scholarship will be even more than this year’s.

About the Authors:

Leigh Waldman is a news reporter at KSAT 12. She joined the station in 2021. Leigh comes to San Antonio from the Midwest after spending time at a station in Omaha, NE. After two winters there, she knew it was time to come home to Texas. When Leigh is not at work, she enjoys eating, playing with her dogs and spending time with family.

Gavin Nesbitt is a photojournalist and video editor who joined KSAT in September 2021. He has traveled across the great state of Texas to film, conduct interviews and edit many major news stories, including the White Settlement church shooting, Hurricane Hanna, 2020 presidential campaigns, Texas border coverage and the Spurs.