Alex Johnstone, Jr. was raised in the community of Willow Creek, 30 miles southwest of Kaycee Wyoming, the youngest of six siblings. Junior’s father died when he was 4 yrs. old. His mother Alice raised the family on her own, the kids helping out when and where needed.
Junior went to school in Willow Creek, a small country school in southwest Johnson County. He quit school after the 8th grade, to help on the family ranch.
Junior became a cowboy early in life, helping the neighbors and area ranches with all areas of ranch work. His innate horse-sense was born out of this ranch work and his talent led to a demand for his horse-breaking abilities. Junior could put a stop on a horse better than anyone. He broke horses for himself, area ranches and rode horses for the Tate Ranch in Sheridan County, horses that went on to play hi-goal polo.
Rodeo was a huge part of Junior’s life, entering all events except steer wrestling and bull riding. He excelled in the saddle bronc riding, winning the Northwest Ranch Cowboy Association (NRCA) Champion Saddle Bronc Riding in 1968. He rode broncs until he was 52, belonging to the Old Timers Rodeo Association. Junior was instrumental in getting young bronc riders started in the Kaycee and Buffalo areas. He help put on several clinics for up and coming bareback and saddle bronc riders. Junior helped put on the Night Rodeos in Buffalo Wyoming and also the Night Rodeos and the Annual Tensleep 4th of July rodeo in Tensleep, Wyoming.
In 1979, Junior and Gladys (his wife) bought a place in Tensleep, Wyoming, stocked it with sheep, cows and horses. Currently they run 150 head of cows and own about 20 head of horses.
At the age of 81, he is still team roping whenever he can.