Mike Vallely Skater Profile

Sponsors: Elephant Brand Skateboards, Iron Fist Clothing, Airwalk Shoes
Hometown: Long Beach CA, Stance: Regular, Age: 44, Status: Pro

Last Update: Friday, March 23, 2012 Submit an Update

Mike Vallely on Instagram (@mikevallely)

11/27/2014

Ryon Rommel Ryon Rommel was not a “Mike V” fan. To him “Mike V” was some over-exposed dinosaur — Irrelevant. Ryon had ambitions of being a pro skater, he was about what came next… Not what was. I know all of this because Ryon told me. When I traveled to Florida to meet Ryon in 2001, he had a secret. The secret was that he was not really a fan of mine. He had written to me almost as a joke… Knowing that I was some bleeding heart pro-skater. He was hoping he could tug on my heart strings and get some free product out of me. He had been recently diagnosed with leukemia and he had written to many skateboard companies and pro-skaters — Sharing his story, looking for product, for support. He knew that I had a reputation to respond and so he figured he’d clump my old-ass in with the others. I took his letter seriously. Of course I did. I wrote him back. I told him that not only was I gonna’ send him product, I was going to come visit him. The first time I met Ryon, his secret was revealed. It was written on his face. I knew I was dealing with some punk-ass kid who didn’t really give two-shits about me. That is until we got to know each other. And we got to know each other quick. In a matter of several small shared moments. Moments that we were both completely present in… And I didn’t care that he didn’t care, I still cared about him. And he didn’t care that I was some old-school knuckle dragging neanderthal… He liked me anyway and we became fast friends. I remained friends with Ryon for the rest of his life. We shared many more moments and adventures both on camera and off. One of my favorite times with Ryon was when I visited him and his family without any cameras around. Ryon and I took of to the mall… I pushed him around in his wheelchair and we shared all kinds of laughs and pizza. Without the cameras, we weren’t taking ourselves so seriously… We were just being kids. Of course, I was in my thirties, but that didn’t stop me. Ryon brought out the best in me. I knew who I was in his presence… And he knew he could share anything with me and he did. Even how he wasn’t a “Mike V” fan. We had a good laugh at that. #mikevallely

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