Word is quickly spreading to surfers around the world that Santa Cruz legend Shawn ‘Barney’ Barron passed away Tuesday afternoon at just 44-years-old. Reports have been made that Barron suffered a heart attack, but details have yet to be confirmed.
The big wave charger was very much a part of the Santa Cruz surf culture. As one of the most progressive surfers, he paved the way for the sport alongside Ken ‘Skindog’ Collins, Darryl ‘Flea’ Virotsko, Jason ‘Ratboy’ Collins, and others in the crew of Westsiders. One of the heaviest breaks in the world, and certainly the west coast, Mavericks was a part of Barron’s stomping grounds, competing several times in the competition and well known for his massive free surf sessions.
Recently, Barron spent much of his time volunteering with the Mauli Ola Foundation to teach children with Cystic Fibrosis how to surf. He also enjoyed painting in his free time when he felt inspired.
The entire surf community is shocked of the news of Shawn ‘Barney’ Barron’s death, and will never forget his vibrant personality, and impact on the sport of surfing.