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Sheriff rodeo renamed after late Adams County chief deputy

NATCHEZ — The sounds of the Adams County Sheriff Rodeo that had been scheduled for the weekend of May 15 and 16 were not heard this year as the annual rodeo was canceled due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We had no control of canceling the rodeo due to the pandemic,” said Robbie Thomas, producer of the rodeo. “The virus has a lot of people scared and that is understandable. To have a rodeo, it is a two-fold deal: crowds and sponsors. If you do not have the crowd or the sponsors, then you cannot put a rodeo on.”

But the 10th year for the rodeo will not go without any celebration.

Karren Ewing, coordinator for the rodeo, said the Adams County Sheriff Rodeo has been renamed the Wayne Rabb Memorial Rodeo presented by the Adams County Deputy Sheriffs.

The renaming of the rodeo is in honor of former Adams County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Wayne Rabb, who died on Aug. 18, 2019, after being stung by a wasp.

Bryan Rabb, son of Wayne Rabb, said he is sad that the rodeo did not happen this year but is thankful for the dedication to his father.

“My dad worked hard on the rodeo,” Bryan Rabb said. “It means a lot and it’s a great honor for them to name the rodeo after my dad. Every year he would dedicate all of his time and effort to the rodeo. The rodeo was a way of life and my dad loved to do it. He loved horses, loved the rodeo atmosphere and being around it.”

Ewing said with the money raised through the deputy sheriff’s fund there is going to be something special to honor Wayne Rabb at the William Johnson Arena.

“We are purchasing an American flag, a flag pole to be placed on the grounds of the arena with a stone moment in his honor,” Ewing said.

The monument dedication and rising of the flag will happen at 10:30 a.m. Aug. 18 at the William Johnson Arena.

Annette Rabb, wife of Wayne Rabb, said she appreciates the monument in honor of her husband.

“I thank God for the monument, the sheriff’s office and everyone involved,” said Annette Rabb. “I appreciate Wayne and Donna Johnson for the monument to happen at the arena.”