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Nathan Clark, Inventor of Desert Boot, Dies at 94

“Right until the end, he was helping us and inspiring us,” said Jim Salzano.

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Nathan Clark the inventor of the Desert Boot and cousin Galahad Clark

NEW YORK — Nathan Clark, the architect behind Clarks’ iconic Desert Boot, died on June 23. He was 94.

Until his death, Clark had remained passionate about his family’s business. Each day, he put on his leather apron and, with the help of two assistants, worked on new designs and prototypes at his Manhattan townhouse.

“Right until the end, he was helping us and inspiring us,” said Jim Salzano, president of The Clarks Cos. N.A.

The industry veteran, who joined the family business in 1947, was best known for creating the Desert Boot, first introduced in 1949 at the Chicago Shoe Fair. Since then, the style has sold in excess of 10 million pairs.

“The Desert Boot is still a best seller today and is recognized as a worldwide symbol of Clarks,” the company’s CEO, Melissa Potter, said in a statement. “Nathan will be sadly missed by all his friends at Clarks and throughout the footwear world.”