Born Harry Richard Frye in San Diego, California on September 7, 1941, Skip, as he became known to his family, would grow to be one of the pioneering surf skaters of the 1960s time period. After turning pro as a surfer and shaping boards for Gordon and Smith surfboards, Skip and a number of influential surfers embraced G&S’ new flexible fiberglass skateboards, eventually called Fiber-Flex, that would become a huge hit in the ’70s. In fact, Skip was featured in one of the very first ads in the second issue of the Quarterly Skateboarder (1964), before the name Fiber-Flex was unveiled, testing out one of the new decks with his signature fluid, gliding slalom style.
The following year, Skip competed in the International Skateboard Championships and placed second overall in downhill slalom, only a tenth of a second behind his G&S teammate Willie Phillips. Both rode the new Fiber-Flex boards. Going on to design his own iconic Skip Frye model surfboard for G&S in ’66, his famous “wings” logo became a mainstay in the industry. Having continued his success as a legendary surfer and shaper, including being inducted into the International Surfing Hall of Fame in 1991, the International Surfboard Builders Hall of Fame in 2006, and the Surfing Walk of Fame in 2011, Skip only recently began skateboarding again at the age of 74, declaring to fellow surfers in a recent interview that “skateboarding will absolutely keep your legs in shape. My legs feel like they’re five years younger just because I’ve been riding a skateboard.” Amen.