This year’s recipient of the “Mick and Susie McMurry Cowboy Code Try Award” is Lance Neiberger. In 2006 Lance lost his son, Lyle, to suicide at the age of 17. In the aftermath of his loss, Lance was left with more questions than answers. Since then, Lance has dedicated his time to bringing awareness to the issue of suicide by educating the public on warning signs encouraging those who are struggling with suicidal thoughts to reach out, and helping those who are grieving after the loss of a loved one.
Over the years, Lance has worked in the schools sharing his son’s story to encourage young people to reach out if they are struggling. He says that one of the reasons he is effective is that he is not afraid to talk about suicide with people. Lance has served on the Natrona County Suicide Prevention Task Force for 17 years, serving as their chairman for the last six years. One of the most effective tools Lance has found is Question, Persuade, Refer (QPR), an evidence-based practice that gives people the confidence to engage with individuals who they suspect may be thinking about taking their own life.
Lance and his wife, Linda, have lived in Casper for 46 years, where he worked as a petroleum engineer. In addition to their son Lyle, Linda and Lance have a daughter, Lily. She and her husband Shawn live in Casper and have 3 children, Maisy, Kade, and Maddy.
To Lance, the Try is giving 110% of yourself to other people, no matter how challenging the situation, no matter what time of day, and no matter how painful the experience may be. Lance says, “I’m truly humbled and honored to receive this award, and I’m thankful for the opportunity to bring this cause to another audience because that is what my life is about, trying to save just one more person.”
In addition to Lance’s work with suicide prevention, Lance is the Co-President of the Casper chapter of Sleep in Heavenly Peace, a non-profit dedicated to providing beds to children at no cost. He says, “No child should have to sleep on the floor, and we are able to build beds with community support at no cost to the families. It’s easy for families to sign up. They simply go to the website and fill out some information.”
Lance will receive the Cowboy Code Try Award at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming 25th Annual Awards & Recognition Breakfast honoring Mitch and Lilly Zimmerman, with a keynote address by Taya Kyle. The breakfast will take place on September 13, 2023. Breakfast will begin at 6:30 am at the Ford Wyoming Center. There is no cost to attend, but guests are asked to make a meaningful contribution to support impactful programming at the Boys & Girls Clubs of Central Wyoming.