Pat Curren–legendary shaper, big-wave trailblazer, and father to 3x World Champ Tom Curren–passed away on Sunday at the age of 90. Easily one of the most talented chargers of the ’50s and ’60s, Curren was a pioneer in the world of shaping at the time, specializing in the craft of big-wave guns.

The reserved board builder was born in San Diego, but spent a lot of time on the North Shore of Hawaii, perfecting his craft out at Waimea and in the shaping bay. According to Matt Warshaw’s Encyclopedia of Surfing, Curren was “the most patient of the big-wave surfers, and would often sit quietly for two hours or longer waiting for the right wave. He took off on fewer Waimea waves than any of his companions, but invariably got the one that everybody remembered. Once up and riding, Curren kept his feet and legs fairly close together and used a medium crouch, with a ramrod- straight back, his arms swept out like wings.”

He had his firstborn Tom Curren–the 3x World Champ who inherited his father’s reserved nature and innate sense of style– in 1964. Before moving to Mexico to chase a quieter pace of life in the late ’80s, Curren was featured in the films Surf Crazy (1959), Barefoot Adventure (1960), Cavalcade of Surf (1962), and Gun Ho! (1963).

Do yourself a favor and head on over to the Encyclopedia of Surfing to learn more about the imprint Current left on the surf culture at large.

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