Angus Mitchell, the only child of the iconic hairdresser Paul Mitchell, died Wednesday at age 53, according to the Honolulu Medical Examiner. TMZ first reported the news.

He appeared to have drowned in a pool at his Diamond Head home. Honolulu Police would not confirm the ID, but said they had opened an unattended death investigation for a 53-year-old man who “was found lifeless in a pool” Wednesday at 7 a.m. The Honolulu Medical Examiner said the cause of death is pending investigation, which could take up to six months.

HPD stated that there were no suspicious circumstances or signs of foul play.

Mitchell was a co-owner of John Paul Mitchell Systems, a hair product company, which was co-founded in 1980 by his father and John Paul DeJoria, who is still a co-owner. 

"It is with tremendous sadness that we mourn the sudden passing of Angus Mitchell," DeJoria posted on Instagram. "As a hairdresser and co-owner of JPMS, Angus has a deep love of family, community, and the beauty industry. Angus was the son of late co-founder Paul Mitchell and was a beloved colleague and important part of our JPMS family. Angus had a huge heart that impacted countless people who crossed his path. We are grateful for the time we got with him, though it ended far too soon. During this shocking and difficult time, we kindly request privacy as we navigate this profound loss." 

Paul Mitchell moved to Hawaii in the 1970s. He had an estate in Lanikai and also started an awapuhi farm on Hawaii Island. He died from pancreatic cancer in 1989 at age 53. 

The younger Mitchell shared his father’s love for Hawaii, according to a Forbes article. He was active with the Nature Conservancy of Hawaii and donated land for nature preserves. He also supported other Hawaii organizations, including Child and Family Service, Palama Settlement and the Marine Reconnaissance Foundation. 

The Instagram account for DeJoria's charitable foundation posted the photo below of father and son posing together on the beach in Hawaii. 

Following in his father’s footsteps was not a simple decision for Mitchell, who attended hairstyling school at Vidal Sassoon. 

“I always knew I wanted to honor my father and better understand the industry and family business,” he told Forbes. “But having the last name Mitchell made things harder for me. In beauty school, my work was scrutinized and my confidence shaken. Respect and opportunity are earned; they are not an entitlement, regardless of birthright. I was always aware I was under a microscope and I wanted the approval of my peers. I just kept my head up and stayed committed to completing what I had started.”

Along with inheriting his father’s share of John Paul Mitchell Systems, he opened his own salon in Los Angeles in 2010. 

Hawaii artist Kim Taylor Reece honored Mitchell in an Instagram post, writing "💔 broken broken heart 💔 tears fall for you dear friend. How could we have known this was our last night with you? You loved life and lived it full of gratitude and grace. Our world has lost an incredible being. We are better because we knew you. Thank you for the time we had with you @angusmitchell_ love you.

Angus Mitchell is survived by his 8-year-old son Dylan and his wife Mara.

Michelle Broder Van Dyke covers the Hawaiian Islands for Spectrum News Hawaii. Email her at

Editor's note: This story has been updated with statements from John Paul DeJoria and the Honolulu Medical Examiner. (Jan. 4, 2024)