The Fellowship of Christian Cowboys was founded by Wilbur Plaugher, the famous rodeo clown and Mark Schricker, a National Finals Rodeo Calf Roping and Steer Wrestling Champion. When Mark and Wilbur first had the vision for starting a fellowship for cowboys they envisioned cowboys ministering to cowboys. They knew the message of Jesus Christ was important and that cowboys would listen to cowboys. They just never imagined the full scope of what God had in store for the ministry.
Born: March 13, 1922 Died: Jan. 2, 2018
Occupation: Rodeo cowboy, clown and rancher; Fellowship of Christian Cowboys co-founder
Survivors: Wife Ruth Plaugher; children Randall Plaugher, Zoe Ann Pope, Shelly Cotter and Wesley Plaugher; nine grandchildren; and 19 great-grandchildren.
Click on images to view larger – Images courtesy of Fresno Bee
“The Apostle Wilbur” is what the PRCA cowboys back in the late 1960s called Wilbur Plaugher.
The Fellowship of Christian Cowboys (back then, Cowboy Chapter of the Fellowship of Cristian Athletes) was just getting started and churches around the country started asking for some of these “Christian Cowboys” to come speak during the big rodeos held in their area. It was pretty novel to have Cowboys professing to be Christian back then, folks wanted to hear what they had to say. So Wilbur, the well-known PRCA rodeo clown got together with Mark Schricker, PRCA calf roper and steer wrestler, to launch the Fellowship of Christian Cowboys.
First impressions of Wilbur were always grand. He was a big man, standing some 6’5” tall and had a voice to match. He commanded attention just by being in the room and the charisma would roll off of him. As he would start talking about Jesus, his dynamic personality would mesmerized people. You couldn’t help but want to have some of what he had. He never knew a stranger, young or old, he loved talking to any and all of them about the Lord. His energy and strength carried him in grand fashion through decades of rodeo competition along with his ever present evangelism for Jesus.
He was an icon of our times and though we will miss him, I’m sure there is a party going on in Heaven as they welcome the rodeo clown evangelist into their ranks. I remember his saying, “I just want to know I’m going to Heaven. I don’t care what kind of mansion God gives me, it can be an outhouse, and I just want to be there.”
Born: August 27, 1938 Died: October 20th, 2014
Residence: Colorado Springs, CO
Occupation: Horse trainer, custom home builder; Fellowship of Christian Cowboys co-founder
Survivors: Mark is survived by his wife of 51 years, Lynne Schricker; son, Mack (Angie) Schricker; daughter, Leah (Michael) Altstiel; grandchildren, Matthias, Mariah, Ashley, Victoria, Halie and Maddison; brother, Stan Schricker; sister-in-law, Cheryl (Mike) Volz; and many nieces and nephews.
Mark John Schricker, 76, of Colorado Springs, CO passed away in Hospice Care on October 20th, 2014.
Mark was born in Cottage Grove, OR on August 27, 1938 to Hazel and Victor Schricker. He attended Sutherlin High School in Sutherlin, OR. After high school, Mark began rodeoing with his brother Stan around the Northwest region. He enlisted in the Army Reserve during this time and served until his rodeo career caused him to be unable to travel to training.
Rodeo career highlights are: First contestant to win two events at the NFR: Calf Roping (1969) and Steer Wrestling (1962) Won PRCA Runner Up All Around World Championship in 1965 behind Dean Oliver Won PRCA Runner Up All Around World Championship in 1968 behind Larry Mayhand Won PRCA Runner Up Steer Wrestling Championship in 1965 behind Harley May Qualified 14 times for the NFR Held the record for the fastest time on roping 9 calves based on the NFR’s 9 go round format.
Mark married Lynne Harley and together they had two children, Mack Brian and Leah Ree. He worked as a horse trainer and custom home-builder and enjoyed projects on his backhoe and going on outtings for ice cream and playing basketball with his children and grandchildren.
In 1973, Mark co-founded the Cowboy Chapter Fellowship of Christian Athletes with friend and PRCA Rodeo Clown, Wilbur Plaugher. This organization is now called the Fellowship of Christian Cowboys and is headquartered in Canon City, CO. FCC blazed the trail for many of the Cowboy Ministries around the world today.
Mark is survived by his wife of 51 years, Lynne Schricker; son, Mack (Angie) Schricker; daughter, Leah (Michael) Altstiel; grandchildren, Matthias, Mariah, Ashley, Victoria, Halie and Maddison; brother, Stan Schricker; sister-in-law, Cheryl (Mike) Volz; and many nieces and nephews. He was preceded in death by his father, Victor Schricker; mother, Hazel Schricker; brother, Victor (Jr.) Schricker; brother, George Schricker and brother, Bobby Schricker, mother-in-law, Helen Harley; andfather-in-law, Robert Harley.