Yesterday afternoon Douglas Tompkins, co-founder of The North Face, passed away in a tragic kayaking accident in Chile at the age of 72. The group he was with out on General Carrera Lake with experienced choppy waters which ultimately knocked him and others into the water which was under 40 degrees F. Tompkins and his group were rescued by a military patrol boat who had him and 3 others helicoptered out to the nearest hospital in Coyhaique where he passed away from severe hypothermia.
Starting the brand in 1966 to sell outdoor equipment and clothing, Tompkins grew the brand to global proportions and has sponsored many of your favorite freeskiers; Tom Wallisch, Chris Laker, Maddie Bowman, and Sage Cattabriga-Alosa to name a few.
As passionate about skiing and providing quality products to consumers, Tompkins was very adamant about the outdoors and conservation. According to TGR, he started the "Foundation for Deep Ecology in 1990, which "supports efforts to protect wilderness and wildlife, promote ecological agriculture, and oppose destructive mega-technologies that are accelerating the extinction crisis."
We cannot thank him enough for his efforts to preserve and protect what we have on this earth and for everything he has done for action sports like skiing.
Rest in peace Mr. Tompkins, you will be missed.