We Will Miss You
Ben was born in Mexia, Texas in 1933. He started his career as a professional
rodeo cowboy. While performing at the Chicago Rodeo in 1967, he was chosen
to be the Marlboro Man in print and television cigarette advertisements. In
1970, he received the Andy Award for excellence in these same TV ads.
Ben's riding ability and horsemanship led to his becoming the stunt double for
James Arness in 1972 for the last four years of the long-running Gunsmoke television series. In addition, he also worked on the Gunsmoke movies, How
the West Was Won, Red River, McClain's Law, The Legend of the
Lone Ranger, 13 Days to Glory, White Buffalo, Banjo Hackett, etc. Ben thoroughly enjoyed not only the camaraderie of the family
atmosphere on the various sets of these projects, but also the wholesome
storylines, values, and morals that were portrayed in these series and movies.
Not only did he perform stunts, he also acted in many western themed
commercials, set records at rodeo arenas, and ran the