Brendan Leung, 1976-2018: Skateboarder remembered for longevity, style, negligence for earthy pain

February 24, 2018 - skateboarding

Brendan Leung of Santa Cruz, a skateboarder for Natural Koncept given 1998 and for Bill’s Wheel’s before that, died Feb. 8 after being struck by a car. Cmart, Natural Koncept/contributed
Brendan Leung of Santa Cruz, a skateboarder for Natural Koncept given 1998 and for Bill’s Wheel’s before that, died Feb. 8 after being struck by a car. Cmart, Natural Koncept/contributed

SANTA CRUZ Brendan Leung never reason back. That’s one thing Josh Zickert, owners of Natural Koncept Skateboards, and many others remember about a veteran skateboarder from Santa Cruz who died Feb. 8 during age 42.

Zickert would take Leung and other group riders out on tours adult and down North America, where they would mostly movement in contests and reason demonstrations day after day after prolonged day. Leung, he recalled, would hang around to a unequivocally end, signing autographs, pumping adult a throng and hurling himself and his house onto a concrete. He possibly landed his pretence or came adult bloody.

On a long, late-night outpost rides between stops, Leung would mostly desire Zickert for a subsequent day off. Zickert would acquiesce. But a day off never lasted that long.

“Brendan would be watching, entertaining everybody on and then, 20-30 mins into a demo, get so hyped he would run and squeeze his house from a outpost and start rolling around a park,” Zickert wrote in an email since a sarcoma on his outspoken chord creates it formidable for him to speak. “The kids would watch him comfortable adult on tiny obstacles and then, 4 mins later, he’s doing behind 360s over a whole pyramid. It was insane! Three hours after he would finally be done. Crack another drink and grin and giggle a night divided with a team.”

Leung died dual days after a automobile strike him while he was channel a travel on his skateboard after finishing adult his work change during a Trader Joe’s in Capitola.

He is survived by his father and mother, Adolpho and Corinne Leung, his sister Bridget Leung-Rogala and a family of skateboarders that includes a NK organisation as good as those during Bill’s Wheels of Santa Cruz.

Bill’s Wheels gave Leung his initial break, signing him to a group in a late 1990s. At a time, Leung was uninformed from Massachusetts, carrying changed to Northern California with small devise other than to make it as a skateboarder. He initial landed in Sacramento, where he met one of his best friends, Darren Nix. Two months later, he was vital on Nix’s couch.

“He was one who always followed his heart. He was about good times, never had any contrition in anything and no apologies for his behavior,” Nix recalled. “Sometimes that burnished people a wrong way, though we knew who he was during all times.”

When Nix changed to Santa Cruz, Leung followed, and that’s when a wheels unequivocally started rolling on his career. He met Bill Ackerman, of Bill’s Wheels, and immediately clicked with his team. The other riders dubbed Leung “Hippie Pants” due to his tie-dye wardrobe, hemp choker and laid-back attitude. Most everybody else, however, came to know him as “Lai Wing,” a phonetic spelling of his Chinese final name.

Leung brought some-more than his quirky celebrity and libations to a scene, however.

“He did tricks other people couldn’t do,” pronounced Shane Sutcliffe, Bill’s Wheels group manager. “His signature trick, we think, was 360 (degree), one-footed ollies. He would flog his feet out like crazy. He’s half Chinese, so we always suspicion he was like a ninja, like a karate expert, with a approach he skated.”

Nix pronounced it fast became apparent that Leung, who had a passion for training and warranted an associate grade during Cabrillo College, had finished skateboarding story partial of his early education.

“Brendan brought a lot of story into his skateboarding. His bag of tricks was unequivocally deep,” Nix said. “He knew thousands of tricks from decades before and could move them all together. He was re-inventing tricks that have been finished though no one had seen in 15 years. It was amazing.”

Leung also seemed cool to earthy pain. Videos constraint him throwing down tricks with small to no courtesy for his body. Without fail, he would scratch himself off a petrify and, if his house was still total — even if his physique wasn’t — try a same pretence again.

That and Leung’s singular character were what held Zickert’s attention. He sealed Leung to a Natural Koncept group in 1998. The association constructed 5 signature Leung decks, and he was still deliberate a group supplement when he died.

Twenty years into a profession, he hadn’t mislaid any of his fervour for a sport.

“He was so driven and ardent about skateboarding and his friends. That kind of passion is rare,” Nix said. “It’s unhappy one to remove that kind of passion in a community.”

Contact Julie Jag during 831-706-3257.

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