Veteran surfboard and skateboard builder Bob Turner passed away suddenly on Saturday morning, March 23. Bobby, as he was known to his friends, grew up in La Jolla, California, where he started building surfboards in the 1950s. Bobby was an innovator and a skilled craftsman. In the early 60s he moved to Hawai’i where he built surfboards for a number of years. Bobby Turner returned to build surfboards in California and New York in the 60s and 70s before going back to Hawai’i to build sailboards with Robby Naish in the early 80s.
When he once again moved back to the mainland from Hawai’i, Bobby pursued his passion of building the innovative, foam cored Carbon-graphite Turner Summerski skateboard decks. Early Turner Summerski decks are valued by skateboard collectors and pros alike and bring very high prices, if and when they are available. Turner’s innovative slalom skateboards are beautiful and functional works of art whose performance is as legendary as their style.
In addition to being one of the very few surfboard builders in Oregon in the 80s, Bobby was an expressive artist whose resin graphics and creations are cherished by those fortunate enough to own them. Bob Turner was an accomplished flamenco guitarist who also played jazz and rock bass guitar, and Hawaiian slack-key guitar. He loved to ride dirt bikes and was an accredited computer programmer.
Bobby leaves his wife, Peggy, his daughter, Sydney, son Ivery, grandson Cody, brothers Percy and Vincent, as well as innumerable friends from the surf and skate industries here and abroad, all of whom will miss him.