International Surfboard Builders Hall Of Fame Inductee Details
For: Woody Brown
Inductee Name
Woody Brown
Event Year
Inductee Location
Inductee Contact
Woodbridge Parker “Woody” Brown passed away Wednesday, April 16, 2008, at Hale Makua
Inductee Brand
Inductee Boardshop
Boardshop Link
Inductee Bio

Unsinkable regularfooter from Kahului, Maui, Hawaii; pioneering big-wave rider in the early 1940s. Brown was born (1912) in New York City, the only son of a Wall Street brokerage firm owner. At 15, Brown worked for aviator Charles Lindbergh, just before Lindbergh made his historic transatlantic flight in 1927; Brown then dropped out of high school, ran away from home, and became obsessed with glider flying.

He moved to Southern California in 1936, towing his glider, settled in La Jolla, built himself a surfboard, and a few months later became the first person to ride Windansea, which soon became the hub of La Jolla surfing. At a 1939 gliding competition in Texas, Brown set world records for altitude, distance, and time aloft, earning a congratulatory telegram from former President Herbert Hoover.

One day after he returned home, his pregnant wife went into labor and died in childbirth. Grief-stricken, Brown abandoned his son at the hospital, left all his possessions in La Jolla, and sailed to Hawaii. "I couldn't live without her," Brown later said. "Nothing had any meaning in life to me anymore. I abandoned everything, including myself."

For the complete biography, go to:

Thanks to: for the photo


Woodbridge Parker "Woody" Brown: 1912 – 2008


Of Wind and Waves The Life of Woody Brown