GLENDALE, Calif. - Asher I. "Dick" Kelty, whose innovative design of lightweight backpacks with external frames and waist straps made his brand of packs popular with many hikers, has died. He was 84.
Kelty died of congestive heart failure at home on Monday, said his wife of 57 years, Nena.
Born in Duluth, Minn., Kelty moved to Glendale in 1922. He worked for Lockheed Overseas Corp in England, joined the Navy, and later worked as a carpenter in Southern California.
An avid hiker and camper in the Sierra Nevada mountains, Kelty launched his now well-known brand of backpacks out of his home in 1952.
Kelty Pack was sold to Boston-based CML Group in 1972, and is now owned by Colorado-based American Recreation Products Inc.