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Reeves was born in Eagle Pass, Texas. She received her undergraduate degree in speech from Texas Woman's University. She enrolled in the University of Texas School of Law in Austin, but the economic conditions of the Great Depression forced her to withdraw and seek work to help her family. Reeves taught high school in San Antonio and worked part-time as a riding instructor at a local stable. She had always been around horses, and was quoted as saying that she sat on a horse before she could sit up by herself. In 1936, she joined the equestrian program at Camp Waldemar in Hunt. It is estimated that she taught 30,000 girls how to ride at the camp.
Reeves met her husband Jack at the camp and the couple married in 1942. They managed a 10,000 acres (40 km2) sheep and cattle ranch for more than forty years when camp was not in session. Jack Reeves died in 1985.
In 2003, Reeves died from injuries suffered when she was thrown from her horse. She had been injured several times in the last few years of her life, including having been kicked by the same horse, resulting in a fractured thigh.
Her autobiography, I Married a Cowboy: Half Century with Girls & Horses at Camp Waldemar, was published in 1995. Her motto was, "Always saddle your own horse."