Buddy was born on March 8, 1920 in Hill County, Texas. The Neal family soon moved to Garden City, Texas, to ranch and Buddy attended school there.
While in school in Garden City, Buddy met his future wife, Mary E. (Beth) McWhorter. Beth moved to New Mexico and Buddy could propose.
After they married, Buddy and Beth were living in the Rankin area and he started competing at many of the local roping. He soon joined the Turtle Cowboy Association and started traveling to the major rodeos. When the Rodeo Cowboy Association, RCA, was formed, Buddy joined and continued to compete at rodeos in calf roping, team roping and single steer roping.
Buddy competed at the Pecos rodeos for close to twenty years in one or all of his events. It was during this time that announcer Buck Jackson always mentioned the “Buddy Neal Corner”.
In 1952, Buddy won the single steer roping event at Cheyenne, Wyoming. He placed or won at enough rodeos that year to be named the World Champion Steer Roper.
Buddy has the privilege to be good friends and roping buddies to many of the members of the Texas Rodeo Hall of Fame. Some of these are John D. Holleyman, Troy Fort, Toots Mansfield, Jim Espy, Louis Powers, and others.
Buddy passed away on June 3, 1996.