Chief Black hoof

William "Rusty" Cottrel

Born in Sidney, Ohio | Currently resides near Springfield, Ohio.

Married (43 years) to Pamela Frazier Cottrel (Springfield News Sun Columnist and former Editor of the Enon Messenger).


Graduated from Ohio State University in 1971 and United States Naval War College in 1983. 


  • Graduated from Naval Flight School in 1973. 
  • Active Duty with the United States Navy 1971-1993. 
  • Flight instructor and post Production test pilot. 
  • Home ported at numerous Naval Stations on both coasts and Hawaii Deployed at Naval Air Stations and on board ship, literally around the world. 
  • Retired from active duty in 1993. 
  • Senior Naval Science Instructor for 16 years. 
  • Retired from teaching in 2009. 


  • Trains horses for use in historical reenactments (including movies).  
  • Hunting and competitive shooting (with muzzleloading firearms). 
  • Fly fishing. 
  • Builds many of the firearms used for history interpretations.  
  • Plays banjo. 
  • Active with local church - with wife and daughters on many occasions has presented bluegrass gospel music for services. 


  • Locally active with historical interpretation and local heritage organizations. 
  • Portrays historical characters including Continental soldiers, frontiersmen, musicians and Native Americans.  
  • Dragoon character based on actual ancestor.
  • Member of Ohio/Indiana Peckuwe Shawnee (Shawnee name: Peletenucshelwa). 
  • Family lineage includes Boone family through Sarah Boone, sister of Squire Boone, Daniel's father.
  • Genetic link to Native Americans has been confirmed, yet family tree is unclear at this time.
  • Have been portraying Black Hoof for past 13 years.