Ralphie IV, retired Colorado Buffaloes mascot, dies at 19

Ralphie IV, retired Colorado Buffaloes mascot, dies at 19

Ralphie IV, the retired live buffalo mascot of the University of Colorado, died Sunday. She was a month short of turning 20.

"Ralphie IV will be greatly missed by all", her caretaker John Graves said.

Ralphie was buried at an undisclosed location in Hendersonville, CO where she's resided since her retirement. Her last appearance took place on August 31, 2008 when she was succeeded by Ralphie V, Colorado's current live mascot. She was named Rowdy by ranch hands. After retiring from game duty, she would continue to make appearances at events including the National Western Stock Show, the Colorado State Fair. "Fans knew Ralphie IV for her right horn that grew crooked, and the handler that had the privilege to work with her knew her for her unique personality".

During her time as mascot, she led the buffs on the field 75 times, including 10 postseason games.

"Losing Rowdy is like losing a family member", said Gail Pederson, CU's former associate athletic director who oversaw the Ralphie program for 20 years.

Colorado Buffaloes mascot Ralphie runs onto the field with his handlers before a game against the UCLA Bruins on September 6, 2003 at Folsom Field. It was determined that she was suffering from liver failure and in rapid decline.