After a long battle with cancer, Hobie Alter died on March 29th at his home in Palm Desert. He was eighty-years-old.
Hobie did more for surfing than almost anyone else. Alter was born and raised in Ontario, California. It was there that he began shaping balsa surfboards in the early years of the 1950′s. In 1954, after his father grew tired of wood shavings and resin covering his garage, he and his family moved to Dana Point, where Hobie opened up Hobie Surfboards. He had no idea at the time that Hobie Surfboards would eventually become the top-selling surfboard brand of all time.
Before he died, he requested a traditional Hawaiian paddle-out ceremony. And a paddle-out he got. In the waters off Dana Point, hundreds of people paddled out to honor a legend. The Orange County Harbor Patrol sprayed water in the air while flowers floated on the surface of the water.