|Death: ||Mar. 23, 2009|
Danny Joe "D.J." Allen, age 23, of Brownwood, passed away Sunday, March 23, 2009. His body will be cremated under the direction of the Heartland Funeral Home in Early.
A memorial service honoring D.J.s life will be held at 1 p.m. Saturday, April 4, 2009, at the Cross Plains rodeo arena in Cross Plains, Texas.
For six weeks, no one had a clue what had happened to 23-year-old Danny Joe Allen, a professional bull rider from Fort Worth.
His buddies in the tight-knit rodeo community were worried about him after he disappeared while driving to Erath County after a Feb. 15 party, police said.
They checked hospitals and jails but apparently never reported him missing.
On Sunday, Allen's remains were found partially ejected from his overturned Pontiac Grand Prix.
A rancher rounding up stray calves found the car in a creek bed near Stephenville.
The rancher "doesn't go down there very often at all," state trooper Steven Marks said. "It's pretty thick with brush and overgrowth."
Investigators believe Allen was eastbound on U.S. 67 when his car went off the north side of the highway "for unknown reason."
The car hit a concrete culvert, rolled and landed in Duffau Creek nine miles east of Stephenville.
Because the speed limit there is 70 mph, passing motorists would have had a difficult time spotting the vehicle.
"The roadway slopes down about four feet and then there is, probably, a 10-foot drop down to the creek," Marks said. "Unless you were specifically looking for it at a slow speed, you weren't going to see it."
Marks said investigators thought it was unusual that no one reported Allen missing, although troopers have since learned that his friends were very worried about him.
"Being a bull rider, he had a real tight group of friends," Marks said. "His friends had called to see if he had been in the hospital or jail, but no one ever filed a missing-person report."
Allen had no identification with him because he had left his wallet and cellphone in a friend's vehicle before driving to Erath County to visit other people, Marks said.
"He had cashed a paycheck," Marks said, "and he had a pretty good chunk of money in his wallet."
His friends had guarded Allen's property until they learned that his body had been found.
"Then they brought it to our office on Wednesday," Marks said.
His family could not be reached for comment, but rodeo organizers said he won money at events in 2008, and he also made it to the finals of the Cowboys Professional Rodeo Association last October in Angleton.
His potential was noticed by Jim Richards of Stephenville, a director for the rodeo association, based in the Houston area.
"He was a nice young man — a 'yes sir, no sir' type of boy," Richards said. "But he had high expectations of himself and he was doing everything possible to meet those expectations."
Cremated, Ashes given to family or friend.
Created by: cahaden
Record added: Apr 04, 2009
Find A Grave Memorial# 35503309