LOS ANGELES (AP) — Former top-ranked big-wave surfer and oceanographer Ricky Grigg has died.
His wife, Maria, tells the Los Angeles Times ( http://lat.ms/T1IMTO ) Saturday that the 77-year-old Grigg died of pneumonia May 21 at his home in Honolulu. His wife confirmed that information to The Associated Press.
The celebrated surfing pioneer was also a marine researcher who explored undersea volcanoes and confirmed one of Charles Darwin's theories about the origin of tropical islands.
In the 1960s Grigg was the world's top-ranked big-wave surfer. He appeared in more than a dozen surf movies.
Richard Wayman Grigg was born in Los Angeles and grew up in Santa Monica. As a youth he traveled the California coast in search of big waves.
As an oceanographer, much of his research centered on atolls and submerged islands.