Theme Park, Amusement Park and Attractions Industry News

Inflatable pioneer dies

It’s off to the big bouncy castle in the sky

John Tom Scurlock, a plastics specialist who invented the Space Walk, the inflatable toy that in its various forms has become a fixture of countless events and attractions, passed away September 27 in New Orleans. He was 83.

While working at NASA applying mathematical concepts to plastic materials, Scurlock invented the first inflatable amusement ride. He also invented an inflatable cushion to rescue people who jump from tall buildings during fires.

He subsequently founded a business Space Walk Inc, which sold and rented Space Walks and other products. In turn and perhaps unwittingly, he created a whole new sub-sector of the amusement industry.

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