Born in Rapid City, South Dakota, in 1918, Chuck Parkison grew up on a ranch, and, like many boys, enjoyed bull riding and bareback riding in high school. After a stint in the U.S. Army, he settled in California and became president of the Douglas Aircraft riding club.
In 1948 he announced a rodeo at Hollywood’s old Gilmore Stadium, and he liked it so much he soon turned professional. For more than 43 years, Parkison worked the mike at every major rodeo in the United States including Madison Square Garden, Boston Garden, Pendleton, Omaha, Fort Worth, and seven times at the National Finals Rodeo. For a quarter century he was the voice of the largest indoor rodeo at Houston’s Astrodome, and the largest outdoor rodeo at Cheyenne’s Frontier Days.
At the 1988 Cheyenne Frontier Days rodeo, Chuck Parkison suffered a heart attack and died at age 69. He was inducted into the ProRodeo Hall of Fame in Colorado Springs, Colorado, 1989. The Professional Rodeo Cowboys Association (PRCA) voted him ProRodeo Man of the Year in 1970, considered one of the sport’s highest accolade.