One of Houston’s most famous craftsmen passes away

ABC Eyewitness News/Screenshot

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Houston bootmaker Rocky Carroll, whose work has been worn by U.S. presidents and entertainers alike, has died at age 79.

Carroll’s clientele included royalty, politicians, Hollywood stars and regular people who sought out his boots for the quality of their craftsmanship. Former President George H.W. Bush wore a pair to the Republican National

Former President George H.W. Bush wore a pair to the Republican National Convention in 2000, according to ABC 13 Eyewitness News. “I made Dick Cheney’s boots, President Bush, President Ford, a lotta people up here,” he said in an interview.

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Carroll came from a line of Italian cobblers, who passed along their trade secrets to him as he grew up. They especially taught him the importance of adding a unique, personal touch to every piece. He sometimes put in 18-hour days in his workshop, and apparently, worked right up until his death.

His son, Michael, will be taking on the business with his father’s passing and plans to continue his legacy. “I didn’t realize it until today when I saw it on the news,” Michael told ABC, “and saw what a real legend he was and how many lives he inspired.”

There’s already a small memorial taking shape at the Houston shop where Carroll ran his business.

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