Shawn "Barney" Barron passes away at 44

May 6, 2015 | Surfing
Shawn Barron: an artist of the big waves | Photo: Doug Acton

Mavericks legend Shawn "Barney" Barron has passed away at 44.

The surfer from Santa Cruz apparently suffered a heart attack. The Californian surf scene in a state of shock. Barron had recently been involved in Operation Surf, a surf learning program for wounded war veterans.

"It's been a few hours since I learned of the passing of my friend Shawn 'Barney' Barron. I've been reminiscing of trips, parties and surfs we've shared. Each and every one of those memories brings a smile to my face," underlines Peter Mel.

"He was an innovator. In his surfing, his art and his personality. There's nobody I could compare him to. I will never forget you, Shawn. I'm sad today, but will always remember you with a grin. Thank you for sharing your life with us. You will always be in our hearts. Love you brother."

Shawn Barron was more than just a surfer. "Barney" was an artist and an art collector. He loved painting, sculpture and contemporary performances.

"I think that when I was in my mother's belly, I could see water ripples when I moved my hand," he once joked. "Some things are never finished. When you're really into art, it's like driving by yourself."

Shawn "Barney" Barron saw surfing as an art expression. He took part in the documentary "The Westsiders," a film about hardcore localism in the heart of Santa Cruz.

The aerialist, big wave charger, and "modern day Andy Warhol" from Pomona will forever be remembered.

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