RIP Donald Takayama
It is with a heavy heart we report the passing of legendary surfer/shaper Donald Takayama. With a lot of the TWS family hailing from Oceanside and Encinitas, we had the privilege of growing up and surfing with Donald. One of my earliest memories of surfing was at our local beach where Donald would be hanging out with surfers that we'd only seen in magazines and movies. Donald always had a board for us to use and was always generous with his famed teriyaki sauce! I once saw DT nose ride through a cavernous tube (at Beacons of all places!) and couldn't believe the things he could do on a surfboard. He also shaped boards for the neighborhood kids and took whatever we could scrounge up as payment. There are also stories from before my time of DT at the annual Stone Steps contest where contestants chugged resin buckets full of beer before their heats—the little guy always won!
A master shaper, champion shaper, and ambassador of aloha, Donald Takayama will be sorely missed by the surfing community after passing away in his sleep yesterday. Our thoughts and condolences go out to friends and family of Donald. Rest in peace DT. Updates and more information can be found at hawaiianprodesigns.com.—Justin Coté