Skateboarding Icon Keith Hufnagel Dies at Age 46 After Brain Cancer Diagnosis

Tyler Conway@jtylerconwayFeatured ColumnistSeptember 25, 2020

A skateboarder balances his board along a wall in a skateboard park, Thursday, June 25, 2015, in Austin, Texas. (AP Photo/Eric Gay)
Eric Gay/Associated Press

Skateboarding legend Keith Hufnagel died this week, more than two years after he was diagnosed with brain cancer.

He was 46.

HUF Worldwide, the company founded by Hufnagel, released the following statement:

"We are absolutely heartbroken to deliver the news today that HUF founder Keith Hufnagel has passed away. Keith battled brain cancer for the past 2.5 years. And though he beat the odds and fought back much longer than his diagnosis permitted, he ultimately and unfortunately lost the fight. 
 
"Keith was not only the ‘HUF’nagel in HUF. He was the heart and soul of this brand. He built and brought together a community of people like no one else could.
 
"Keith paved the way for all of us – as a respected professional skateboarder, shop owner, brand founder, footwear and apparel designer, creative director, and industry leader. He showed us how to do it, and how do it right.
 
"Keith loved skateboarding and the culture around it. He did things his way and did them for the right reasons. He inspired so many of us across the globe. 
 
"But above anything else, Keith loved and supported the people around him. He would do anything for his friends, family and children. He passionately wanted to see others succeed. And we all loved him for it.
 
"Keith’s legacy will continue to live on at HUF. Today, tomorrow and forever. 
 
"Rest in peace, Keith."

Hufnagel was one of the more influential skateboarders in history, helping push the sport from a niche to widely popular in the 1990s. Along with his work on the board, Hufnagel was a skate-style innovator who pushed HUF Worldwide to become one of the most popular skate shops in the nation. The brand's slogan, "F--k It," helped define a generation of skaters for both their relaxed attitudes and their willingness to do gravity-defying stunts.

Hufnagel is survived by his wife, Mariellen, and their two children. 

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