Celebrating the Life of Jack O’Neill
O’Neill Australia paddles out in honour of a Legendary Waterman
July 2017, O’Neill Australia celebrated the life of legend Jack O’Neill with a paddle out at the birthplace of Australian surfing -Freshwater Beach. With current and ex staff members, team riders, surfing royalty, local surfers and a beautiful and crisp offshore morning, it made for some beautiful moments to reflect. Synchronising with paddle outs happening in Santa Cruz, Holland, France, Belgium, UK, Canada, South Africa, Japan etc, it was a day for all, to say thank you to the man that enabled us to surf no matter what.
Jack, who was most recognisable for his eye patch and his beard, had a desire to surf longer, and drove him to create an innovative suit that allowed surfers to be in the icy waters of the San Francisco Bay. The invention was monumental - it made it possible to surf year-round in cold-water areas and welcomed a new mass of people who previously didn’t surf. Those first suits led to more surfers, and the eventual acceptance of surfing in popular culture.
Jack O’Neill, surfer, ocean lover, boating enthusiast, wetsuit pioneer, balloonist, and founder of the iconic worldwide brand O’Neill, passed away in Santa Cruz, California, of natural causes at the age of 94.
O’Neill Australia would like to extend a heartfelt "Thank You"