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Professional Bull Rider Who Died at Fresno Event was ‘Rising Star’

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Amadeu Campos Silva, seen at a prior event, died at a Fresno PBR event on Sunday. (Image: Bull Stock Media)
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A Professional Bull Riders athlete died during competition at the Save Mart Center Sunday, PBR officials say.

Amadeu Campos Silva, 22, died during a bull riding event in a “terrible wreck,” the PBR said.  He was taken to Community Regional Medical Center in Fresno where he was pronounced dead.

“The entire PBR and western sports family extend our thoughts, prayers, and heartfelt condolences to Amadeu’s family and friends.  Please say a prayer tonight for them, and may Amadeu’s soul eternally rest in peace,” PBR CEO Sean Gleason said in a statement.

Rider Had Spur Caught in Rope

The PBR said Silva’s injuries came when he fell off his bull.

“After losing his balance on the bull, Amadeu’s spur got caught in the flank rope.  He was caught under the bull, who stepped on his chest,” PBR spokesman Andrew Giangola said.

Giangola said this is only the third death in the PBR in the last 28 years. The league will investigate, he said.

According to an account from USA Today, Silva lost his seat during a ride on the bull “Little Okie.”

Silva was a four-year veteran of professional bull riding, competing in his native Brazil in 2017 before moving the the US. tour in 2019.

He was  runner up in the 2019 Brazilian Finals, and considered an up-and-comer on the PBR tour.

“Amadeu battled hard and was a rising star in our sport,” Giangola said.

Cal/OSHA, the state agency in charge of workplace safety, said they will not look into Silva’s death.
“Cal/OSHA was notified of the incident but is not investigating because the incident does not fall within Cal/OSHA’s jurisdiction (no employee/employer relationship or other employees present. Descendant was an independent contractor.),” Cal/OSHA spokesman Frank Polizzi said.

The PBR will continue its tour with events in Dickinson, North Dakota and Archdale, North Carolina on Sept. 3-4. An event aboard the USS Lexington in Corpus Christi, Texas takes place Sept. 4, and will be broadcast the following day on CBS.

Curiosity drives David Taub. The award-winning journalist might be shy, but feels mighty with a recorder in his hand. He doesn't see it his job to "hold public officials accountable," but does see it to provide readers (and voters) the information needed to make intelligent choices. Taub has been honored with several writing awards from the California News Publishers Association. He's just happy to have his stories read. Joining GV Wire in 2016, Taub covers politics, government and elections, mainly in the Fresno/Clovis area. He also writes columns about local eateries (Appetite for Fresno), pro wrestling (Off the Bottom Rope), and media (Media Man). Prior to joining the online news source, Taub worked as a radio producer for KMJ and PowerTalk 96.7 in Fresno. He also worked as an assignment editor for KCOY-TV in Santa Maria, California, and KSEE-TV in Fresno. He has also worked behind the scenes for several sports broadcasts, including the NCAA basketball tournament, and the Super Bowl. When not spending time with his family, Taub loves to officially score Fresno Grizzlies games. Growing up in the San Francisco Bay Area, Taub is a die-hard Giants and 49ers fan. He graduated from the University of Michigan with dual degrees in communications and political science. Go Blue! You can contact David at 559-492-4037 or at Send an Email

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