Keith Maddox, otherwise known as “The Hat King” from Bowie, Texas, was born June 1, 1945 in Weiser, Idaho and died September 4, 2019.
Keith began bull riding and bareback riding at a young age and by age 18 was competing in professional rodeos. He graduated from Eastern Oregon University in 1971 and immediately began working in the western industry where he had a long and successful career.
He and his wife, Susan, opened The Best Hat Store in the historic Fort Worth Stockyards in 1996, where he not only sold cowboy hats, but learned how to make them. In fact, he made them at that location.
Seven years later, he bought the American Hat Company in Conroe, Texas, which was the company he had tried to buy years earlier. The first thing he did was move the business from Conroe to Bowie, Texas.
He lost everything during a grass fire in 2005, but that didn’t stop him. He used everything at his disposal to start over again, including taking out a loan, taking another mortgage on his home and even using his retirement to rebuild the business.
Keith had a positive outlook on life and people said the party didn’t start until he got there. He made it a mission to have everyone around him have that attitude also.