The legend says he’s as camera-shy as Bigfoot, or Banksy. A rap sheet tells of a taste for fast living. The rumors? Oh, boy, where to begin … Let’s start with a story about a surf mogul who hates publicity.
Cocoa Beach and Ship Bottom are small towns. A reclusive surfing millionaire with a criminal history tends to get people talking.
Today, DiMenna, a.k.a. Ron Jon, a.k.a. Joey Norton, at 74 years old continues to flummox journalists. He has hardly had his photograph taken in four decades — mug shots notwithstanding (more on that later). He runs a nine-store, $30 million-a-year retail empire stretching from Canada to Key West from a wandering luxury motorhome that he bought for $500,000 and customized with a paint job that makes it look like an old woodie. If he behaves as if pursued by something, perhaps it is his reputation.
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Story by Matt Higgins