Delbert Harold Hataway was born to Othel and I.N. Hataway on February 27, 1938, in Snyder, Texas. Roping and riding came naturally to him growing up since it seemed all his friends and relatives, including his younger brother, Albert, and his cousin, Billy Joe “Goat” Hataway, did the same. Delbert raised his favorite horse, Little Sissie, on a bottle when her mother died. He enjoyed ranch work and rodeos and often practiced his riding skills on the backs of milk cows. An important influential cowboy in Delbert’s life was and still is J.R. Meadows of Snyder.
When Delbert first began to ride bulls and bareback horses in AJRA rodeos, his parents objected. Eventually they learned he tricked them into signing the parental permission form by assuring them he was entering only roping events. By the time he graduated from Fluvanna High School in 1956, Delbert was competing in local and area rodeos and working for the Scarborough Cattle Company in Midland, Texas.
His ambition grew with his successes as he read about the Cow Palace in San Francisco and followed the careers of local cowboy Roland Davis and rodeo stars Harley May, Jim Shoulders, Casey Tibbs.
In 1958, Delbert joined the Professional Rodeo Cowboy Association and competed in the National Finals Rodeo in 1960, 1961, 1963 and 1964. Delbert was setting in 1st place going into the finals in 1961 but due to a shoulder injury was unable to ride all of his bulls and ended up finishing in 4th place that year. He closed out his professional career in rodeo with a 3rd in the NFR for 1964.
He made many lasting friends in the PRCA, including his best partner, Bill Rinestine. Due to a number of injuries, Delbert’s rodeo career was short but was, nevertheless, impressive. Some of his major wins in bull riding include Cheyenne, Winnipeg, Gladewater, Phoenix and Salinas.
After retiring from rodeo, Delbert worked as a pumper for Texaco for twenty-eight years and lived and ranched on his home place near Fluvanna, Texas, he also served as bucking judge at Snyder and Roby rodeos and also at Stamford Cowboy Reunion for several years. Currently he is a crop adjuster for the USAg and sells for Superior Cattle Company. He continues to raise cattle and ride his horse Bugs.