Rewind: Live chat with skateboard pioneer Tony Hawk
Tony Hawk first stepped on a skateboard when he was 9 years old and went on to become a legendary figure in the sport.
At age 12, he was winning amateur contests throughout California, at 14 he turned pro, and at 16 he was widely regarded as the best competitive skateboarder in the world.
In 1999, Hawk teamed up with Activision to create the Tony Hawk's Pro Skater video game franchise. The series became one of the most popular game franchises in history.
That same year, he also became the first skateboarder to ever land a 900 at the Summer X Games in San Francisco.
Soon after the 1999 X games, he retired from competition, but continues to put on demos and exhibitions all over the world.
His Tony Hawk Foundation has donated more than $3.2 million to more than 450 skatepark projects throughout the United States. The foundation helps finance public skateparks in low-income areas.
On Thursday, he brings his Birdhouse Left Coast Tour to the Jefferson Park Skatepark in Seattle.
Hawk talked about his larger-than-life skateboarding career in a live chat July 25 on seattletimes.com.