An original member of Larry Stevenson’s pioneering Makaha team (which was founded in 1963, and was itself essentially the first real skateboard exhibition team in history), Gregg Carroll joined fellow Skateboarding Hall of Fame members Danny Bearer, Wendy Bearer, Woody Woodward, and Bruce Logan along with John Fries, Scott Archer, Joey Saenz, George Tafton Jr., and Squeek Blank during the brand’s formative years (which saw the invention of the kicktail and manufactured the first true professional skateboards) spanning the mid to late ’60s. In addition to his tenure with Makaha, Gregg was also a pivotal member of the Imperial Skateboard Club from Torrance, California, and would co-star in the first film ever made about skateboarding, 1965’s hugely influential Skater Dater.
Written and directed by Noel Black, the film would go on to win the Palme d’Or for Best Short Film in Cannes the following year and was also nominated for an Academy Award. In the film’s opening scene, as fellow Imperial Club riders Gary Hill (later credited as the forefather of American video art), Michael Mel (lead role), Bill McKaig, Gary Jennings, Bruce McKaig, and Rick Anderson skate down the hills of Palos Verdes, Carroll does what can easily be classified as the first “hippie jump” ever caught on film when he jumps a wagon on the sidewalk. Gregg also leads the skate crew after the main character leaves for the girl and skates in the downhill dual for the film’s climax. A lifelong skateboarder until the end, Gregg passed away on November 13, 2013 after a two-year battle with cancer.