The Orange County Register recently featured Hendrick Boards on the daily’s front page with a heartfelt story about the start of the company. OC Register reporter, Lori Basheda, highlighted David Hendrickson’s dog, William, as the inspiration behind Hendrick Boards and the “Boards 4 Barks” collection. Photos of David Hendrickson and William were taken at their favorite skateboarding site, Huntington Beach.
The Orange County Register
Survivor dog inspires skateboard artist
July 12, 2011
One day you’re being poisoned by some sadistic pet owner.
The next you’re the mascot for an eco-friendly skateboard company.
You might have seen him around town. He’s the doggie with the ridiculously big ears riding around in the arms of a guy on a skateboard.
The guy on the skateboard is David Hendrickson.
About two and a half years ago, Hendrickson was doing volunteer work at Orange County Animal Care in Orange and noticed a small crowd gathered around a kennel.
Word was that a pregnant dog had been poisoned by its owner. Three of her five pups in the litter didn’t survive. The other two, a brother and sister, had been brought to the shelter.
Hendrickson walked up to the cage.
“And that’s where I met William,” he recalls. “We just connected. We sat and stared at each other for a good minute straight. He had the (biggest) ears I’ve ever seen and these big, huge beautiful eyes. The only way I can explain it is love at first sight.”
The dog appeared to be some sort of Chihuahua-terrier mix. Five pounds soaking wet. He didn’t have a name, just a number.
Hendrickson adopted him that day. He had always thought that if he had a son he would name him William, so William it was. “I know, it’s weird,” he laughs. (He still plans to name his firstborn son William and hopes to adopt a special-needs child someday.)
Hendrickson took William back to his studio apartment in Anaheim.
He had grown up in a family that rescued everything from Rottweilers to a 20-pound tortoise. But tending to William was turning out to be tougher than Hendrickson expected. The tiny dog was plagued by vomiting and infections, and he needed expensive surgeries on his mouth, nasal passages and intestines.
Eventually, Hendrickson left Orange Coast College (after getting his AA in Graphic Design), and took on three jobs to pay for William’s medical bills.
When he wasn’t freelancing graphic design, working with children with brain injuries, or digging ditches on weekends for a construction company, Hendrickson would take his boy out on his skateboard, cradling him as they rode.
Then, this spring, as he was heading to Huntington Dog Beach, Hendrickson thought about how happy he was at that moment, with William in his arms. Something clicked. He loved William, he loved skateboarding and he loved art and design.
Why not put them all together?
He could design skateboards to benefit animals. [...]