By Jessica Crabtree
“Hold your head up and enjoy your ride. Hey cowboy, just enjoy your ride,” is the refrain to Casey Pilgreen’s hit country song “Enjoy the Ride,” which doubles as his album title. It is a mantra Pilgreen lives by and truly embodies.
Pilgreen was born and raised in Oklahoma, residing in the rural farming and ranching town of Waurika. “I am proud of my raising. It turned me into who I am,” Pilgreen admitted. As a youth Pilgreen attended school there, was active in his local FFA chapter and worked alongside his PaPa Harmon Lindesmith, who is a farmer and rancher, as well as his dad Ralph Pilgreen, a farmer, rancher, and order buyer for cattle.
In the thick of things, so to speak, Pilgreen’s family traveled to the NFR while still in Oklahoma City so that their young son could take in the rodeo and bull fighter Rex Dunn. An aspiration of Pilgreen’s was to fight bulls; never doing so, he did try his hand at riding bulls.
As a young man, Pilgreen had dreams of becoming a veterinarian due to all the influences around him. However, at the age of 10 he began playing the trumpet for the Waurika School band. An almost immediate talent, as a freshman, he and his National FFA band-mates were selected to play at the National FFA Convention in Kansas City, Mo. for keynote speaker George W. Bush. FFA was a huge part and contributor to Pilgreen’s life. Showing a great interest in country music, he asked for a guitar at 17 for Christmas and began lessons, even fiddling a little with the fiddle with coach Leon Gibbs.
Once graduating high school, Pilgreen had his sights set on Oklahoma State, but chose to begin his academic career at “UCLA”….(the University Of Cameron Lawton America). There Pilgreen completed his basics and prepared to transfer to vet school at Stillwater.
To read more pick up a copy of the January 2018 NTFR issue. To subscribe call 940-872-5922.