The surfing fraternity is mourning of one of its greats following the passing of Michael Peterson, or MP as he was affectionately known to many.
Peterson, who was instrumental in opening up Kirra and appeared in early surfing movies including the iconic Morning of the Earth, died of a heart attack at his Tweed Heads home yesterday morning aged 59.
A revival of another film in which Peterson appeared, In Natural Flow, took place at the Komune Beach Club, Greenmount just last month.
Despite the camera liking Peterson’s unique style of surfing, in real life he hated the limelight and famously failed to turn up to the opening night of MOTE.
As well as his many wins in the water during the 70s, MP made something of a name for himself as a local surfboard shaper, and even attributed some of his success to an usual ‘rocker’ board that he designed to give himself the edge in the water.
A public funeral for Michael Peterson will be on Thursday at Tweed Heads Crematorium followed by a celebration of Michael’s life at Rainbow Bay Surf Club.
Kirra Surfriders Club members will be wearing black and white armbands at this Sunday’s surf round in memory of their former president and champion, while the Rip Curl Pro at Torquay and Bells Beach will be dedicated to MP.
Kirra was a great place to be in the summer of ’69/70. Perfect for six months straight. All the Australian greats were there but non were more innovative or legendary than Michael. He didn’t say much, just nodded in the water but you learnt a lot from watching him.
Micheal Peterson was a sporting hero in the same league as John Newcombe and Graham Langlands. RIP MP