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The bull has definitely stopped in Tracyton

Betty Dominy cries a river of crocodile tears for the not-so-dearly departed bull that her father owned. Some called the ornery wandering critter “Bubba” and others called him “Blackie” at a memorial service held Saturday for the recently slaughtered bull. - Photo by Tracey Cooper
Betty Dominy cries a river of crocodile tears for the not-so-dearly departed bull that her father owned. Some called the ornery wandering critter “Bubba” and others called him “Blackie” at a memorial service held Saturday for the recently slaughtered bull.
— image credit: Photo by Tracey Cooper

Bubba, a.k.a. Blackie, never met a yard he didn’t like. Now he’s grazing the greenest pasture of them all.

The bull, a well-known Tracyton troublemaker, was slaughtered following the last of many escapes from the confines of Tex Dominy’s fence.

But he, the Scottish Highlander Houdini, will not be forgotten.

Last Saturday, Dominy invited the neighbors — most of whom had run-ins with the enormous bull and his infinite (or was that infamous?) appetite — to a bull memorial.

Blackie’s silhouette hung from tree trunks as did napkin bundles marked “crying towels.” Under a canopy of trees, gospel and country music poured forth from a boom-box and hamburger patties hissed on the grill.

They were Kirkland brand from Costco, not Blackie. Chicken was on the menu too.

About 15 of Dominy’s friends and family members attended the service. The Kitsap County Sheriff’s Office and Kitsap Humane Society were invited but declined. Dominy, a Texas native, invited George W., but he too was a no-show.

No bull.

“I never asked him his age. He wouldn’t tell me anyway,” Dominy said of Blackie. He estimated his age at about 8.

While in Tracyton, Blackie would wander the neighborhood and cross Tracyton Boulevard looking for the most tender grass.

“Any time a lawnmower started up Blackie was there,” said Keith Gardner, Dominy’s son-in-law.

Neighbors, KCSO Sheriff’s deputies and animal control officers would corral Blackie back to his yard, which happens to sit across from Tracyton Elementary.

Too many wanderings raised concerns, considering the proximity of the school. And those concerns led to the bull’s demise.

“He caused a lot of trouble. A class action lawsuit was being considered against Blackie before his demise,” jokes Leon Leslie, a friend of Dominy.

“I wouldn’t miss it for the world. I loved Blackie,” Gardner said

“He just enjoyed his life,” Gardner said noting Blackie had done his part in procreation. At best guess he had at least five progeny.

“He was mischievous. He loved to travel,” he said.

Gardner remembered when a friend of the family would come to feed Blackie and the bull came to associate their pickup truck with chow time. One day the man left his truck at the Dominy’s and returned to find the truck damaged and the tail lights busted.

Gardner cleaned Blackie’s head and hide and plans to make a rug for Dominy.

“He’ll have Blackie to stomp on,” Gardner laughed.

The memorial didn’t just honor Blackie, but the people who spent late nights herding the bull home. About 15 people attended the service with most of them wearing a blue sweatshirt with Blackie’s picture and the tagline “A lot of bull.”

Some shared their stories of the famed bull, who had been written up in the local newspapers on several occasions. Leslie crafted a poem “Ode to Bubba.”

“Feisty, big and fast, but alas he had a propensity for grass,” Leslie read.

Betty Dominy, Tex’s daughter, came all the way from Edmonds to say goodbye to the beast. Dressed in a cowboy hat and boots, she cried fake tears into her bandana lamenting the relationship she never forged with Blackie.

While others said Blackie was a “like a big labrador retriever” Betty said the bull was downright ornery.

“I wouldn’t go through the pasture if I didn’t think I had a good spot to get away,” she said.

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