North Face co-founder Douglas Tompkins dies in kayaking accident at 72

December 9, 2015 4:32 AM

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North Face co-founder Douglas Tompkins, who abandoned his executive life in the Bay Area to pursue his passion for ecology — and spent his fortune on land purchases in South America as part of a quixotic and sometimes controversial mission to save the continent's remaining wild terrain — died Tuesday of severe hypothermia after a kayaking accident, Chilean authorities said.

The Aysen health service said Tompkins, 72, who was also co-founder of the Esprit clothing line, was boating with five other foreigners when their kayaks capsized in a lake in the Patagonia region of southern Chile. Tompkins died in the intensive care unit of the hospital in Coyhaique, a town about ...

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