After years of battling drug addiction, Pascal Leader, known as Sax, died at his apartment in New York City on Saturday afternoon. He was 25.
A surfer who had traveled to Hawaii, Bali, and Australia for the waves, he was also a talented artist who drew on surf and skate themes in the graphic designs that adorned the T-shirts sold by his On Point company.
Mr. Leader was born in Manhattan on March 8, 1988, to Graham D. Leader and Jacqui Sedlar Leader, both of whom survive. The family lived briefly in England before settling in East Hampton. He attended the Hampton Day School and graduated from East Hampton High School in 2006.
After high school, Mr. Leader attended a National Outdoor Leadership School wilderness education program in Baja, Mexico, then went to Cabrillo College in Santa Cruz, Calif. He also attended the School of Visual Arts in New York City, in addition to a number of other educational pursuits, including acting school.
In addition to his father, who lives in New York, and his mother, who lives in Amagansett, Mr. Leader is survived by a sister, Kira Leader of Southampton, and two nephews, Torin and Nash.
“You could tell he was in love with both babies before he met them,” his sister wrote. “He had tremendous respect for my boys and was so proud to be an uncle. When Sax was with Torin, he had real happiness in his eyes. He was in awe of watching Torin change and transform. Sax got a kick out of the crazy ‘boy’ things that made Torin so happy and got an equally big kick out of watching Nash and the goofy things babies do. . . . Sax would have wanted a child of his own, and I’m so grateful that God gave him time with mine (for their sake and his).”
Mr. Leader is also survived by his stepfather, Peter Creegan, who wrote that he “loved Sax like he was my own son,” and a stepbrother, Jasper Creegan, both of Amagansett. Also surviving is his longtime girlfriend, Abigail Gawronski of New York City. “He was my person and I loved him so much,” she wrote.
A viewing is planned for Saturday at 1 p.m. at the Springs Community Church, with a celebration of Mr. Leader’s life to follow at the church at 2:30. The Rev. Tony Larson will officiate. Mr. Leader will be cremated and his ashes will be spread at his favorite surf spots.
The family has suggested donations to FleaHab, a Capitola, Calif., nonprofit drug rehabilitation program focused on physical activity. Contributions can be made via the organization’s website, fleahab.net.