VIDEO SPECIAL: NKF Salick Pro/Am Surf Festival

By  //  September 7, 2012

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BREVARD COUNTY • COCOA BEACH, FLORIDA – The 27th annual NKF Rich Salick Pro/Am Surf Festival honored the late Richard Salick, the Space Coast surfing legend who passed away last July.

Billy Hahn and Rich Salick surfed together in the Salick Surf Teams back in the 80s. (Image courtesy of Billy Hahn)

The surf fest was held over the Labor Day weekend at the Cocoa Beach Pier and featured outstanding pro, amateur and tandem surfing, bikini contests, surfing dogs, celebrity surfers, live music and a “Taste of Brevard” fundraiser where attendees sampled great dishes prepared by Brevard’s best chefs.

In 1973, Salick was a professional on the United States and World Surfing Teams when his kidneys failed. After surfing all over the world, he was diagnosed with IGA Nephropathy, a disease that breaks down the filtering units in the kidneys.

Salick was newly married and in his last year of college, his future looked bright. He lost 35 pounds in two weeks, underwent 8 ½ hours of dialysis daily for a little less than a year and was told that he would never surf again. Salick knew from the beginning that he wanted to have a transplant, and fortunately he had a very willing donor —his identical twin, Phil.