This week we are celebrating the skateboard career of Austin Stephens with the release of the Austin Stephens Toy Machine Farewell Deck.
I recall Austin coming to me at the Toy Machine Halloween demo a few years back saying that he didn't think he could do it anymore. And I said, "Do what?" and he said, "Skateboard. My ankle doesn't work anymore." It was a heavy realization, one a skateboarder hates to actually come to grips with. Every skateboarder thrashes their ankles over time, and for Austin, it was just one tear, tweak, twist too many and after loads of procedures and healing time it seemed to be worse than when he started.
I respect a man who is willing to see things as they are and make an honest choice. So it was with great sadness that we retired Austin Stephens, the rider who was on Toy Machine the longest aside from me. -ed templeton
We will be doing a number of blog posts in remembrance of the stylish and graceful time A-Stone spent with Toy Machine. Here, we have a sampling of Austin's Toy Ads...
This rules. Austin Stephens will always be one of my favorite skateboarders. Austin, I met you in 2004 during the Toy Machine "Kick in the Teeth" tour and your were really friendly and signed my poster. All your parts were thoughtful and always enjoyable to watch. It's safe to say in this small town of Bethlehem, Pennsylvania, you left your mark in terms of influence, amongst my group of friends. Good luck to whatever road you follow.
Posted By: Flipper on December 16th, 2013 at 05:40PM PST
i'm hoping a farewell montage is in the works.
Posted By: anthony on December 17th, 2013 at 01:23AM PST
Im a ToyMachine fan because this guy!
Salud Austin Stephens!
Posted By: VitarSK8 on December 17th, 2013 at 07:56AM PST
Farewell Austin Stephens :)
Posted By: himynameisagy on December 17th, 2013 at 05:37PM PST
Damn Austin, you had my favorite part in This is Skateboarding! Thanks for the feather footed shredding.
Posted By: Stephen on December 17th, 2013 at 05:39PM PST
austin was already missed,
now he will terribly be even more.
Thanks for your finesse and smoothness!
Not only will you be remembered as a comely lad but also as another stylish alumni of toy machine's hall of fame of ex riders.
best of luck with RVCA and whatever endeavors you propose yourself,
Posted By: fresh from mex on December 17th, 2013 at 06:44PM PST
This guy always be good skateboarding!
Posted By: Johan Nahason Céspedes Santis on December 17th, 2013 at 07:24PM PST
Austin, I met you on the \\\"Sucking The Life\\\" tour. My bandmate and I drove down from Virginia Beach to North Carolina just to see you guys. Caswell Berry (!) threw a board to me during the product toss and I got you to sign it. Nervously, all I could say was \\\"I\\\'m...a b-big fan!\\\"
Your skateboarding is, was, and will continue to be a huge inspiration to me in my life. Not just about expressing myself creatively, but expressing myself honestly.
Posted By: Hemlock Drew on December 17th, 2013 at 09:04PM PST
Getting old sucks. Farewell Austin. Best god damn B/S Smith 180 out I've ever seen. I'll buy two of those decks one to rip and one for the wall right next to my Heath deck, out of respect.
Posted By: David on December 23rd, 2013 at 12:58PM PST