On the morning of October 4, 2009, we lost an amazing innovator, fabricator, photographer, and all-around great guy with the passing of Shaun Carlson at the young age of 35.
The NuFormz owner and fabricator had a genetic heart condition and had several heart attacks leading up to this moment. We featured a short news piece on this sad news, but Shaun deserves more than just a simple "news RIP."
Shaun Carlson, like many great fabricators, began his career as a minitrucker. He held an editorial and photography role for Mini Truckin' magazine for almost two years working side by side with good friend, Courtney Halowell. In his time here on the magazine he made a huge impact in our scene. Having the pleasure of meeting Shaun a few times over the years, he was always someone that could make you crack a smile on even the cloudiest of days. Shaun was talented at whatever he put his hands to and in his early years he built the famous body-dropped 4Runner (pictured here) that was painted by Craig Fraser, aka the "Wood Runner" and a turbocharged Toyota pickup. As a great photographer, he shot many amazing features to fill these pages before moving over to Sport Compact Car.
Speed and fabrication go hand in hand, and Shaun always had a need to go fast. Carlson made a splash in the sport compact industry with the Honda CRX he created in collaboration with Jason Whitfield, but he really blew everyone away when he unveiled the world's first full tube-frame front-wheel-drive Honda Civic. Driven by Stephan Papadakis, the car made the industry stand up and take notice that sport compact drag racing was a force to be reckoned with as he became the first person to break 9s in a FWD car. Following his Civic's success, Carlson created the spectacular web of steel tubing, carbon-fiber, and titanium that became the Meguiar's Ford Focus. He opened up shop as NuFormz racing and began building drag racing and drift cars for the Mopar team. He also built the Dodge Charger and Challenger for two-time Formula D champion, Samuel Hubinette.
In more recent years, Carlson was the lead on the Team Mopar drift team and has left a huge hole to fill. It is definitely an understatement to say that Shaun Carlson will be sorely missed as he undoubtedly had many more groundbreaking builds ahead of him. Take a lesson from Shaun and go out and live life to the fullest! You never know how short your time is, and Shaun really captured every moment! Our thoughts and prayers go out to Shaun's friends and family-we can only thank you for having the chance to meet and work with one of the greats. Rest in peace, buddy.