January 22, 2003 11:00 pm

Elgin lost a stalwart of the community and one of its most notable and colorful citizens with the death of Billy Hindman Monday. Hindman's contributions to his community through his work with the Elgin Stampede, and his efforts on behalf of rodeo in general, cannot be understated.

Hindman, 79, was laid to rest on the Hindman Ranch this morning. A memorial service was to follow at the Elgin Stampede grounds.

Hindman, an Elgin native, left a legacy of accomplishments, starting from the impressive family ranch and continuing through his decades of work in helping develop a successful PRCA rodeo in his beloved hometown. Not only was he a charter member of the Elgin Stampeders and a winner of the Stampede Suicide Race, he was an Oregon Cattleman's Association Man of the Year, an Oregon Farmer of the Year and a lifetime member of the Pendleton Round-Up Hall of Fame Association.

All of his contributions notwithstanding, to many locals he'll be remembered best by the stagecoach and team he drove in parades every year for the entertainment of young and old alike. Hindman and friend Odies Payne teamed up and built the stagecoach. They created an indelible impression.

Billy Hindman is a man who made a positive impact on his community and one whose contributions will be felt for generations to come. He will be missed.