OBITUARY: Richard W. Harrington, Former CEO of Maui and Sons, Avid Outdoorsman

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Richard Wickham Harrington, who acquired Maui and Sons in 1989 and grew the company into a worldwide supplier of action sports apparel and equipment, passed away at his vacation home in Sun Valley, Idaho, on August 10.

There’s a Maui and Sons office in the commercial/professional building at Sunset and PCH in Pacific Palisades, and Richard was an active member at the Bel-Air Bay Club.

He was born February 25, 1949, in Buckinghamshire, England to Ivy Walker and James Cornelius Harrington. He spent his childhood in the English countryside with his brothers Tim, Jerry and Jamie.

Moving to the United States when he was 16, Richard attended Palisades High School, where he met his future wife, Susie Sievers. The couple had two children, Kelly and Blake.

He attended Santa Monica City College, and then transferred to the University of Southern California. He was the captain of the USC soccer team and graduated with a degree in history.

During and after college, Richard began his business ventures manufacturing waterbeds, importing and exporting sporting goods, and made his first million selling Rubik’s Cubes.

Maui and Sons was founded in 1980 by three surfer friends in Southern California but languished until Richard bought the company in 1989 and became CEO/chairman. He saw the global potential and transformed Maui and Sons from a clothing manufacturer to a brand licensing company and expanded its operations internationally to reach more than 100 countries.

In 2010, Maui and Sons began manufacturing its own apparel for the domestic market, supplying items directly to retailers. Today, the company supplies to a range of retailers, from fashion boutiques to larger stores. Nearly 300 independent surf and casual boutique shops now carry Maui and Sons products in the United States. For the 40th-anniversary collections, the company offered its first sustainable collection of T-shirts, boardshorts and swim trunks made from recycled plastic.

Richard met Cheryl Johnson through the company and the couple had a son, Richie.

Richard had a great sense of humor and a British wit about him. He loved the beach, the mountains, skiing, playing soccer and golf, fishing, flying airplanes and traveling around the world.

Nothing mattered more to Richard than his family. He is survived by his children Kelly Harrington, Blake Harrington, Richie Harrington and his grandchildren Braeden Barash, Cora Harrington and Teddy Harrington.

He peacefully passed away surrounded by his family and loved ones in his home in Sun Valley.

The family requests in lieu of sending flowers please send donations in Richard’s name to the American Brain Foundation. For information on the memorial service, please contact Blake Harrington at blake@mauiandsons.com.

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