Donald “Buck” Biram passed away Tuesday, Feb. 3, 2014, at the age of 91.
He was born Aug. 15, 1922, in Spokane to Art and Bess Biram of Badger Mountain, Wash. He was joined in 1929 by a sister, Pat, and in 1932 by his brother Mike. They were a farming and ranching family, raising wheat and Hereford cattle. Buck was always a horseman, breaking his first colt at the age of 9 and riding the 13 miles to attend Waterville High School, where he graduated in 1938. He remained on Badger Mountain, ranching and helping neighbors and friends with harvest, brandings and other ranch work. In 1957 the Birams were honored with the Douglas County “Cattlemen of the Year” award.
In 1962, Buck met and married the late Mikell Nelson, who had four young daughters age 3 to 6. They started ranching in Palisades, Wash., just up the road from Art and Bess Biram. Two years later their daughter Stacey was born and in 1967, the family moved to Carlton to farm Mikell’s home place.
Buck always missed “God’s Country” and in 1989, after working eight years as foreman of the Lou Tice Ranch in the Methow Valley, he retired to Rock Island, Wash., where he enjoyed chasing cattle on Badger Mountain with old friends and family.
Buck will be remembered as a top rodeo hand, winning buckles and trophies in calf roping, team roping, steer wrestling and wild cow milking. He never stopped rodeoing and in 1997, at the age of 85, he won the Northwest American Cowboy Team Roping Association championship saddle.
Buck was preceded in death by his parents and sister Pat (Dean) Landon of Waterville. He is survived by his brother Mike (Jan) Biram of Palisades, his daughter Stacey Biram of Waterville and her children Bailey (Nolan) McMonigle and Taylor Northcott. He is also survived by his four stepdaughters, Mindy Miller, Becky (Dick) Fuller, Abbie (Craig) Lints and Julie “Jo” Miller, as well as their eight children and 10 grandchildren.
The family would like to thank Maria and all the staff at Columbia View Terrace in East Wenatchee for taking such good care of “Mr. Buck” in his final years.
A memorial was held Feb. 8 at the Appleatchee Riders Clubhouse in Wenatchee. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Bailey Northcott McMonigle Medical Fundraiser at North Cascades National Bank.