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Subject: Cactus Jack Miller, president of the annual Omak Stampede

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Date Posted: November 21, 2002 8:06:44 EDT

"Cactus" Jack Miller, the colorful president of the annual Omak Stampede and World Famous Suicide Race, died of a heart attack Tuesday. He was 59.

During his 10 years as president of the Suicide Race, a controversial event in which cowboys ride horses down a steep hill, Miller often had to defend the race from criticism by animal rights groups who complained about the treatment of the horses. Several horses have been injured or killed during the event over the years.

Miller served on the Stampede board of directors for 21 years.

He was once a rodeo bareback and saddle bronc rider. He later turned to wild horse racing and competed in that event until recently.

Miller began using the nickname "Cactus Jack" while working as a disc jockey for radio station KSBO in Spokane in the mid-1960s. He also worked as station manager and advertising executive for radio stations in Spokane and Pendleton, Oregon, before moving to Omak in 1975.

In Omak, he was an insurance agent, and owner of Farmers Insurance Group.

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