"PADI co-founder and pioneer diving instructor Ralph Erickson, (1922-2006, has gone to the big reef in the sky. He was 84 years old.
He was a dear life long diving friend who will be missed.
I accompanied him on his very first dive in the Pacific ocean off Anacapa Island in 1962. The dive trip is recalled with found memories. Ralph introduced me to, and we dove the then new and very radical Demone regulators. This diving trip established a life long friendship cemented by the love of recreational diving.
In our last exchange of correspondence Ralph had retired from teaching/coaching in the Chicago area and was living in Texas where he had been occupying his time by teaching a Dive Historian course.
The "Old Bear" was certainly one of a kind and will be missed"
Experience or stupidity may get you there..., only training will get you back!