On Wednesday July 22, 2009, I was sorry to read In a message in the Mundotaurino chat room that, following a long illness, Lyn Sherwood had passed away the day before in McAllen, Texas, where he had resided during the past few years.
Lyn was an information professional. He worked as a newspaper reporter; disc jockey; radio and TV news anchor; talk show host and photojournalist in the Southern California area until he moved to Texas a few years ago, where he also did some work as a journalist. Lyn also published a few books, among them ARRUZA, TORERO AND GENTLEMAN and YANKEES IN THE AFTERNOON.
Nevertheless for us, the aficionados, the most important aspects of Lyn’s activities are related the fiesta brava. Lyn was consumed by aficion during his whole life and he used his communication skills to promote bullfighting and, at the same, he also involved himself in other taurine affairs. His pro-toreo efforts have been recognized by the National Association of Taurine Clubs, which granted Lyn the prestigious George B. Smith Arts & Letters Award, and also the O.P. Houston Award.
First in his youth, before he became a journalist, Lyn tried to be a matador by performing as an aspiring novillero, but since he did not reach his goal, to continue practicing toreo he later became an aficionado practico, and as such he fought many festivals and took part in tientas in Mexico and the United States.
While living in Southern California he was wery active promoting the corridas held in Northern Mexico, especially in Tijuana. Later, when he lived in Southern Texas, he became a good friend of bullfighting promoter Fred Renk, and he collaborated with him by spreading the word that Fred was introducing bloodless corridas in Texas. Lyn regularly wrote reports of the fights held at Fred Renk’s Plaza Santa Maria, in Santa Elena.
Since I was interested in promoting the bullfighting activities in Texas. I contacted Lyn and asked him if he would send me his reviews to post them in MDDT. He was very kind and regularly sent me his reviews, as well as other articles. Our communication was only by e-mail, until I finally met Lyn in Reynosa, Mexico, on May 29, 2005, where I had traveled with Jim Myers to attend the festival of practicos that had been organized by that Jim Verner at the suggestion of Jim Myers, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of my alternativa in Spain.
We met again the following day at the Santa Maria Ranch, in Santa Elena, Texas, where Fred Rank had invited us for lunch. There we chatted about the fiesta and I was able to appreciate Lyn’s vast knowledge of bullfighting, as well as to note that he held very strict traditional standard points of view about toreo. Views that he has strongly defended on his polemical chats with other aficionados who exposed more liberal views.
His dedication to bullfighting motivated his many practicos aficionados friends to dedicate the festival that will be held at Plaza de Fandanguillo in Dr. Coss, Nuevo Leon, Mexico, on August 8 to his memory. Practicos Jim Verner, Pepe Canales, Jorge Valcarcel and Marco Anonio García will fight Arturo G. Garcia’s bulls, and matadors David Renk, Enrique Delgado and Longinos Mendoza will also participate in the festival.
After the festival there will be a memorial service in the Santa Maria Bullring at La Querencia Ranch in Santa Elena, Texas, the home of Renk’s family. Since I am unable to attend the memorial, I spiritually join the friends of Lyn at La Querencia to remember and to honor a great promoter of the fiesta brava in the United States. At the same time that I send my most sincere condolences to Lyn’ family.