This shoe, what it stands for, and how it came about is a perfect example of the effect Johnny Romano had, and will forever have, on skateboarding.
Johnny was a 10-year-old skater form Galveston, Texas whose love of skateboarding and courageous perseverance through his battle with Leukemia captured the hearts of the entire skateboard community worldwide. He never wanted to be known as 'Johnny, the skater with Leukemia.' He was simply Johnny the skater and we all followed his journey with our hearts on our collective sleeves.
A few months after Johnny lost his battle with Leukemia, Sean Malto and Mikey Taylor approached me with an idea to do something with Thunder and Etnies to pay tribute to Johnny, as well as raise money and awareness for the JOHNNYKICKSCANCER Foundation that the Romano family founded. The result was the etnies / Thunder RVL as well as a matching colorway Thunder truck.
Johnny may have lost his battle, but he won the war. His memory and his impact on all of us in skateboarding will live forever. Thank you to everyone who was there for the journey and thank you to everyone who keeps it going.
This one's for you Johnny. We miss the f**k out of you.Jim Thiebaud
To learn more about Johnny, his foundation or the collaboration visit j-grom.blogspot.com, dlxsf.com or the collaboration page at Etnies.