Doc Paskowitz died last night surrounded by his family, leaving a void that will never be filled. The world lost a great man when he slipped away.
While he would never tell you as much, Doc was one of the earliest creators of today’s surf culture. After leaving the hospital in Hawaii he worked at as a doctor, he packed up a van and drove away. That was the beginning of nearly twenty-five years on the road, raising nine children with his wife in a succession of different vehicles. Their life revolved around surfing, loving, and Doc’s general ideas about how life is supposed to be lived. “Going on the road was not a planned, contrived choreographed decision,” he told me. “It was in keeping with the lifestyle that I grew up with.” There are a million stories out there about the adventures he took his family on, and they tell a tale of a man driven to do exactly what he thought was right. For better or for worse, Doc was a supremely principled man.