Popular tour surfer, manager John Shimooka Is Dead
A member of the world surfing elite for several seasons in the 1990s and a former WSL commentator, Hawaiian John Shimooka reportedly died on Sunday, according to posts from close friends on social media. John Shimooka was reported to have died today November 16, 2020, at the age of 50. The talented surfer was found dead at his home. His cause of death has is not yet known as at the time of filing this report.
Shmoo won a tour event in Japan and was runner-up to his best pal Sunny Garcia at Bells in 1995, riding an ultra-fast Greg Webber. He circled the tour for a dozen seasons, finishing nineteenth in 1995. In 2018, John Shimooka was appointed the General Manager of Surfing NSW.
Last year, Shmoo spoke at a surfing contest organised by another former pro, Kurt Nyholm, to raise money for Head Space, an Australian charity that provides mental health support for 12-25-year-olds.
“Shmoo spoke of his struggles and the dark places they’ve taken him,” another tour surfer Toby Martin said. “Now we have Sunny(Garcia). So it has to stop, and we need to find ways to help. This event offered a passive way for surfers to reach out. It was a platform so surfers could let their guard down. That helps stop guys from becoming isolated, which I know from my own personal experience is where the problems start.”
John Shimooka worked as a Sales agent for surf brand Vissla in New South Wales. He also heads up partnership management duties for Surfing NSW. He is a coach for Hawaiian WSL surfer Keanu Asing.