Don Swift was Redondo Beach Topaz Jetty Kahuna
by Mike Purpus
Surfboard shaper and Topaz Jetty surfer Don Swift passed away Sunday from a brain tumor. Almost every day for nearly five decades, Swift sat in his spot, 40 yards southwest of the end of the Topaz jetty waiting for the next set wave. It didn’t matter if it was one foot or 10 feet, freezing cold or blown out. Swift was out there by first light. He lost his spot in the lineup last October when was diagnosed with glioblastoma.
The stoic, 64 year old Redondo High School graduate (Class of ‘70) started surfing with his cousin Mark White when he was eight years old at the north end of the Hermosa Beach on a 9-foot-6 board his uncle made for them.
Swift spent the mid ‘60s surfing between Sapphire and the Redondo Pier. He jumped to the Topaz side of the jetty in the late ‘60s
Everybody who surfs Redondo Beach knows Swift. He was the big Kahuna. Swift is survived by his brother and final caretaker Rod, youngest brother John, Regina Rod’s wife, sister Kathy, daughter Summer and son Zach. A paddleout in Swift’s memory will be held a a future date. ER
by Kevin Cody
Kevin is the publisher of Easy Reader and Beach. Share your news tips. 310 372-4611 ext. 110 or kevin[at]easyreadernews[dot]com