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I was born in Kalamazoo,Michigan,March 24,1969..My family moved to Atlantic Beach Florida in 1973..My earliest memories of Surfing was when my mom would take me to the beach in front of our house in South Atlantic Beach…There I remember guys surfing and I thought that was way better than my Tonka Dump Truck that I dragged down to the beach…My formidable years and memories are of the Jacksonville Beaches and this was where SURFING began for me.





I was introduced to surfing in the Spring of 1974…Living a block from the beach gave me a lot of time to get stoked on watching guys surf…My first ride I cant remember but I do remember going in and out..in and out like a race track…Just Stoked…like any grom stoked on anything…




My first board, was a Australian surfboard shaped by Shane Stedman …I am not fully sure where it came from (sisters x-boy friend??)As far as I remember…I bought the board for $3.00 from my sister Renae…She took the cash (that I probably found in the dirty laundry or in between the cushions of our family couch) ..she bought candy with this hard earned CASH of mine…Well lets just say she didn’t hide here candy very well and I kinda think I ended up getting the board for free…All I know is it turned out to be a sweet deal for me…The board was wide and pretty thick…It had a classic early 70’s (S) deck and a psychedelic SHANE logo towards the tail…

MY FIRST CUSTOM ….My first custom surfboard I got for Christmas in 1976 shaped by Roger Wood..He lived in Atlantic Beach and that time…My Mom & Dad ordered it for me and it was under the tree on Christmas Day…I was STOKED !!!!The whole bottom of the board was airbrushed with all kinds of Hippie colors with a multi colored

glassed on single fin…I think the board was 5’2"…?? I won my first ever contest on this board..1977 First Annual Jax Beach Surf Festival…This contest was my introduction to the whole surf culture…The contest award ceremony was held at the Jax Beach Coliseum…This was the first Surf Movie and Rock Bands playing LIVE I had ever seen…Dave Hart introduced himself to me and wanted to know if I wanted to get sponsored…????? Well Sir…I need to ask my parents…I told him that I would tell him later…( I really didn’t know what being sponsored was …)

END OF MY FIRST CUSTOM…The end came when my Mom was taking me surfing and she placed the board in the bed of my Dad’s Pick Up …Seeing that my board was not able to be seen by other people(Hey. .there is a surfer kid in that pick up) I decided to put my custom board at an angle so the tail was resting on the tail gate…My Mom said " I don’t think you should keep your board hanging ½ way out of the truck"…" It might blow out"…I said "MOM…All the guys put their boards in like this…It’s the RIGHT WAY to do it …She said "OK" …Well we got going about 30 mph and that sucker was flying better than my kite…fin ripped off.. asphalt dings and rocks imbedded in my custom board…No lesson here…Good time for a Sponsor !!!!!




When I started surfing , I didn’t know anyone my age that surfed. I remember taking my surfboard to Atlantic Beach Elementry for my Kindergarten class "show and tell"…The kids kinda gave me weird looks as they then looked at their Bear or Hot Wheels that they had brought. With that being said…the older guys were my influence…or anyone who surfed better than me..I watched everything the older guys did…As magazines and movies started to play bigger roles in my head.. major influences, I would give credit to guys like Cheyne Horan (single fin), MR(twin fin), Wayne Lynch(tri fin) and Tom Curren ( America’s first World Champ –SURFED WITH STYLE AND POWER) …Surfing was on the move as I was growing up…The boards we were riding were rapidly changing as well… Changing from single fins to twin fins to quads then tri fins…The equipment also influenced our approach to a wave…Each of the above surfers surfed their equipment really well and influience not only the surfers but influience the surf market as well. I just dreamed of being a Pro Surfer some day…but it was like trying to get to the Moon for me…

I remember around 1983 there was a Pro contest at the Sea Turtle Inn…I was living at The Casa Marina ( my parents owned the building at the time)…My friend told me that one of America’s top Professional Surfers(1984 Pipe Master Champion) was Surfing

in front of the hotel…" Joey Buran" "really ???" that was it…I ran on the beach to the Sea Turtle( about 5 miles)…all I could think…" I got to see the Pros surf in person…I got to the Sea Turtle and sure enough he was still surfing…I was stoked..he was riding a 4 fin and I was tripping …Joey came in..I ran over and introduced myself to him…He invited me to go to lunch at Mr. Gatti’s Pizza…I was Buzzing…Eating lunch with one of the top pro surfers in the World…To me..he was someone who got to the moon… The friendship with Joey that was first started by this lunch date..later grew when I moved to California and he later became my personal coach as a surfing professional…so he personally had some influence but as for style….Curren

Tommy Curren made everything cool because his surfing style was insane..Tom was our first World Champ ..I alwayed dreamed of being a pro surfer…Cover of Magazines…Style…like him…

My influences were based on Style and Power…. This is what I consider Good Surfing…




When I was a grom....I was friends the late Solomon Coley....He and I surfed and competed together growing up.....Byron his dad would take us surfing or he would
just come down to The Casa for a Surf.....He was my real surf buddy.......I had alot of other friends but they really didn’t have too much in influiencing my surfing but we were all stoked to surf together....and just do everything together.....Skate ramps when the waves were flat or what ever.....The loss of Solomon to drugs an end result of drug depression .... Suicide.... was a real bummer for me....It is a real reminder to me that even smart ..talented ..mates can fall to the Devils traps......I hope that his life and me mentioning him will remind you that drugs suck ....Enjoy what God has blessed us with .....dont waste it Dude!!!!!





My first contest was as I had mentioned the first time that I started to see a bigger picture of what was going on in surfing....It gave me my first carrot to want to surf more contests....Going from a kid that just liked to surf to getting a sponsor who wanted me to surf more contests was big to me....Dave Hart had this way of pumping kids up to compete.....The following year Dave took me to Hatteras for my first East Coast Championships...I won the 1978 East Coast.Champs....It was a mind blower that I was now a East Coast Champ....I was super stoked on all the free stuff and I thought the trophy looked cool....Its kinda weird but when your a grom...The look of and the size of the trophy is a big deal.....and it was almost more important than the actual title on the trophy.....The United States Surfing Championship was also in Hatteras as well.This took place the following week...I placed third .....My Mom and Dad had come up to Hatteras to watch ....and I ended up riding home with them in there silver Corvette....I was Squished into the back for a 14 hour ride home with my trophies tightly in hand...and.just amping on surfing... My Best Contest ....I have had allot of moments in my surfing career that I was stoked on...The best contest and favorite are hard to answer because in contests you may beat a top surfer or get the most insane wave but out of all the experiences that I had competing ....It made me thrive and desire to surf better....However a few year ago.....My wife and I were getting ready to turn the lights out for bed......She said ..I herd that The US...had open Trials and I would be stoked to maybe surf in it.....My wife is a pretty good surfer.....We have three kids .....This was one of those moments that it was like....ok honey....what ever....Then I was like...???? Maybe I’ll surf in it too......Sign ups were at 6:00 am....so we both got all pumped.....We were both entering The US Champs .....A small side note about the timing of this event was my middle child Kasia was in a Dance workshop @the Disneyland Hotel ....that week...This meant driving to Disney and hoping we didn’t miss any of our heats..... We got up the next morning ...brewed the coffee....got the check book and packed the kids in the car to go and sign up......I enter the Masters Division (25-34)....I was 34....and Krissy entered the Women’s...
I won every heat threw the trials and all the way to the finals..She made the final for the women’s......and we were able to go to Disney and back without missing a beat or a heat........ What was awesome was we were competing and our kids were cheering us on........She got 4th in the Women’s and I won the Masters....and again the trophies were COOL and matched our Hawaiian decor.......Pretty all time.....Now....The worst contest was the opposite of my first Hatteras experience..In 1986 ...I was one of the favorites to win another East Coast Title....My surfing was on that year and I really wanted to win since I had lost to Sean Slater (Kelly’s older brother) for the East Coast Title the year before.....I did the 14 hour drive to Hatteras and checked the heat schedule to see that my name was no where to be found...and there was 8 alternates on the list to get in....Dan Brooks(my shop sponsor and owner of Sunrise) forgot to send in my entry form ......(sorry Dan) we all make mistakes but i’m just answering the questions....I was freaking!!!! All I did was surf for hours right next to the contest area... surfing the hardest and the best I ever had .....angry that there was nothing I could do to get in........



When I was 17 my Friend KJ Butterfield was moving to California to check out The PSAA (Professional Surfing Association of America)...This was a American Professional Tour that Joey Buran started and later sold it to Body Glove aka The Bud Surfing Tour.....KJ talked to me about moving with him and finishing High School in California.....My Dad shut that idea down...".No you need to finish school here and think about what your going to do with your life".....I was pretty heavy into art at the time and was considering art as a field that I wanted to peruse......Terry Strump told me..".Dude....If your ever going to be a Pro Surfer...You got to move to California!!!" So this was the fork in the road for me and my life.....Pro Surfing or Art.....and School....I chose to finish High School at Fletcher Sr High then headed West.....I went for it...This was a tougher road than what I had ever considered....I was 18...Never did my own laundry....never really had to figure out how to support myself and I was somewhat lost in a Sea of people I didn’t know......My first contest was one of the first in the Season...Manhattan Beach....I started in the trials and the game was on... I was on a role going round after round ....I was beating guys like Parsons ...Allen Sarlo...and Parmenter....Stand outs on the Tour....I got 17th and I went home WITH MONEY in my first event...things got off to a great start and the contest earning were much better than my two busing jobs and pan handing KJ for food and money...I finished my first Season in the top 30 after missing 2 events....I also made my First Pro Final ....as a Pro.....The Game seemed to be on.....Sponsors and Connections are very important in the Pro World......I was sponsored by Quiksiler but I was a tadpole to them ...Danny Kwock( Team Manager of Quik)... and I had a good relationship and he said that I was best staying here doing the PSAA and they would offer a minimal salary...Ok...I focused on the Bud Tour and I moved up the ranking ...I changed Sponsors always hoping for more Money so I could keep moving forward......The Marketing Departments of the Companies I was dealing with wanted me to stay here because it was better for them that I focus on the Bud Tour....Money was hard to get out of Sponsors since The War... Desert Storm was going on and Advertising Budgets were getting Axed.......The high lights of My Pro Career was getting ranked as high as 2nd and ending the Season in the Top 10......While I was doing the Tour I had met my wife.....We got Married in 1990....I was 21....We had our first child when I was 23....then our second at 25.....The desire for a stable income was a real push to get out of Pro Surfing......It was hard because I now had another fork that I had to consider........Pro Surfing or get into the Industry??? in 94 I was heading out even tough I continued to do various events.......Family had to come first.....1995 I started working retail and is where I am currently employed (Surf Ride).....My surfing career didnt really end...it just changed....I have No regrets in my desicions ...infact I am very Happy......I got to see contests.....be the GROM....be the PRO....be a REP...and now Im in RETAIL......I have been involved in coaching....US Team Coach....and Asst. Coach in the National Surfing League "THE GAME" working with some of the best talent in the World......Surfing has given me a wonderful life and The Lord is the one I need to Thank for that.. SURFING STILL ROCKS!!!!!



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