Tony Hawk Will Put Kurt Cobain’s Iron Maiden Skateboard to Good Use

The skating legend plans to use the board to raise awareness for emotional health

A skateboard owned and hand decorated by Kurt Cobain.
The skateboard that was owned owned and decorated by Kurt Cobain.

With what would have been Kurt Cobain’s 56th birthday approaching on Sunday, Tony Hawk is planning to use a skateboard that was hand-painted by the late Nirvana frontman to raise awareness for emotional health.

Purchased by Hawk at auction last year for approximately $35,000, the board is SIMS Jeff Phillips Pro Model that was outfitted by Cobain with the Iron Maiden mascot “Eddie” from the album Killers in February of 1985. Although the board was not signed by Cobain, its “provenance is well documented,” per the auction house. (Like Cobain, Phillips also died of suicide.)

“Kurt aimed to create custom artwork on skateboard decks and t-shirts as a way of earning money,” according to Julien’s. “In a letter of authenticity, a friend of the skateboard’s owner who witnessed the artwork being completed noted that, ‘Kurt was staying at my parent’s house on 1st Street in Aberdeen, Washington and this is where he created this piece.’”

The previous owner of the board offered a little more info last year. “My understanding of the skateboard, is there were a few guys Kurt hung out with back in Aberdeen in the ’80s, Cameron Ross was one of them, who I also grew up with,” they said. “Kurt was paid, I believe $10, to paint whatever they wanted on the bottom of their boards. Cameron broke his trucks pretty soon after, making the board unusable, but made for a nice piece of art to hang on to for all these years. I personally was never an Iron Maiden fan, but always appreciated Kurt’s artistic abilities.”

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Now owned by Hawk, the skateboard, which only survived because the rear truck got snapped in half jumping off of a freight loading dock a few weeks after Cobain decorated it, could be heading back to the auction block.

“Influence on their respective fields, both of whom passed away tragically and much too young,” Hawk wrote on Instagram of the Cobain-Phillips collaboration. “We are hoping to make something good of this acquisition by raising awareness for emotional health and to help provide resources for those who are struggling mentally.”

In a related story, Hawk’s son Riley and Cobain’s daughter Frances Bean were dating as of a year ago, according to The New York Post.

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