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Flagler Beach Wins County’s Backing To Kill Gamble Rogers In Recreation Area’s Name

| September 3, 2014

Gamble Rogers, in a detail from the plaque in his honor at Gamble Rogers State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach. The plaque would be the only remnant to his memory if the area's name is changed in accordance with the city's wishes. (© FlaglerLive)

Gamble Rogers, in a detail from the plaque in his honor at Gamble Rogers State Recreation Area at Flagler Beach. The plaque would be the only remnant to his memory if the area’s name is changed in accordance with the city’s wishes. (© FlaglerLive)

Update: On Sept. 11, the Flagler Beach City Commission dropped the push to change the name, and on Sept. 15, the County Commission reversed its support for the name change. The story here.

The Flagler County Commission gave its unanimous support to Flagler Beach’s effort to revert the name of Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area to its former name: Flagler Beach State Recreation Area. The change would in effect kill Gamble Rogers a second time, but city officials and business concerns serving on the city’s Economic Development Task Force say “rebranding” the park would spur more tourist activity favorable to the city. The city has never taken to the more recent name, either by associating cultural events with its legacy or attempting to broaden awareness about the late folk singer.

Gamble Rogers was Florida’s folk-singing equivalent of Zora Neale Hurston, his lyrics and rhythms hewed to the state’s old traditions, his famed monologues packing the power of a tent revivalist, and his songs excoriating the hucksters that were in his eyes demolishing the state. Notions of “branding” the state recreation area would have likely triggered his humor and imagination, but probably none too kindly. He died on Oct. 10, 1992, when he was camping at the recreation area with his wife Nancy, and he heard a swimmer in distress—Raymond Tracey of Ontario. He swam out in an inflatable mattress. The surf was rough. Neither he nor Tracey made it back alive. He was 54. Tracey was 48.

Four months later the Florida Senate voted unanimously to rename the 145-acre park the Gamble Rogers Memorial Recreation Area at Flagler Beach, “satisfying,” in the words of a St. Petersburg Times writer at the time, “those who revere Rogers’ memory and those concerned about maintaining the historical name.” The renaming, Jan Glifdewell wrote in February 1992, was the culmination of efforts not just to mark the memory of Rogers after the drowning. “Friends and fans of the late Gamble Rogers,” he wrote, had been “searching for suitable memorials to the former member of the Serendipity Singers who became one of Florida’s best-known folk singers and storytellers.”

Just 22 years later, the city would like to put its stamp back on the area, and relegate Rogers to his small stony monument plaque at the park, which most Flagler Beach residents don’t even know is there. The city thinks it has the support of Rep. Travis Hutson, but not that of Sen. John Thrasher. Both would be necessary as the name change can only happen if both chambers of the Legislature approve. And even Hutson will have to contend with opposition in St. Johns County to the renaming, an effort the St. Augustine Record last November termed “cold” and “crass.”

In fact, Hutson said through a spokeswoman Thursday morning that “he never committed to changing that name” and that Flagler Beach officials may have misunderstood his intentions. Jennifer Lubi, Hutson’s spokeswoman, said that the representative suggested to supporters of the name change to rally every local community in its favor and prove that there is unanimity behind the local effort. If that unanimity exists, then the city can bring the proposal to the annual meeting of the legislative delegation in Bunnell, ahead of the next legislative session, and propose it as a measure for the Legislature to take up.

“But there’s no commitment of running legislation for this after further research,” Lubi said of Hutson. “He didn’t tell anybody he would do it.” And Lubi confirmed that the opposition in St. Johns is very stiff, if not unanimously against the change.

The Flagler Beach City Commission last year voted to work toward a name change, and has been seeking the county’s support since. The city claims that the lengthy name currently often omits Flagler Beach from visibility, and that the change would “create more of a draw for residents and visitors alike.” The recreation area, however, has not had trouble filling its 30 full-service camping spots: Not only is September fully booked. It appears that no spots are available through next July, suggesting a loyal following that does benefit the city to its north.

“For any of you on the fence,” Kim Carney, who chairs the Flagler Beach City Commission, told c county commissioners in a meeting this afternoon, “I’ve been a representative on the economic development task force for almost six years. This is an approved goal by the city of Flagler Beach. We have a resolution that we want this to be done.” She said the reversion is due. “It was Flagler Beach, it left us, and we want it back. We do understand, as a committee, that we need to do some work with Sen. Thrasher. Rep. Hutson is ready to take this. We have met with him, and we have petitions. We have a whole strategy on how we’re going to make this happen. One is a petition throughout the city, and we’ve done that successfully.”

Carney said that the city does not usually name its landmarks, though commission members challenged her on a couple of locations—Betty Steflick and Wickline parks

“Well, Betty Steflick is yours. Wickline, technically, you’re right, it’s part of a building process,” Carney said. “But the point is that Flagler Beach doesn’t want to go down that road. On a very small note, F comes before G, so if you’re scanning the Internet and you’re looking for camping in Flagler County, Flagler Beach area will come up before Gamble Rogers. It is a true and passionate attempt to work with the tourism department to get Flagler Beach back on the map.”

But judging from its camping bookings, it hasn’t been off the map.

Gamble Rogers.

Gamble Rogers.

Andy Miklos, a member of the economic task force, described how two decades ago the name change was going to happen whether the city wanted it or not. The city found itself limited to “damage control,” trying to preserve its name in the overall designation of the park. “This has been pretty much shoved down our throat,” Miklos said. “It was not popular with the residents, and what we would like is just to return it to the way it was. As far as the economic benefits, it’s hard to measure. It’s easier if you get out and talk to the people and ask them about the name change and what it means to them and their city. There is a great pride in keeping Flagler Beach in the name. It reflects on the community and the way the community looks to other people.”

Michelle Brown, owner of the Flagler Beach Gift Shop and another member of the task force, circulated petitions over the summer “to make sure the community was behind us and that people were behind our project,” she said. “I gained over 200 signatures in that time.” Just three people didn’t want to sign, but one merely wanted more information and only two were outright opposed. The signers included tourists and visitors “because I was asked to do that,” Brown said.

She said people “are not familiar with Gamble Rogers, the historical aspect of it, it’s really not helping us brand the area at all.”

Flagler Beach of course has an unsettled relationship with petitions: when a majority of the commission supports an issue, petitions are welcome. When a majority is opposed, petitions are ridiculed. Just last month a majority of the city commission made light of a petition that bore some 650 names in opposition to a $600,000 fire truck purchase that most of the commission supports, with only Carney in dissent. Carney, of course, supported the petition, which her husband had helped gather. Several commissioners suggested that many names on the petition were fictitious and that 650 signatures meant that 4,300 residents had not signed, and therefore were in favor of the truck purchase.

By that logic, as only 200 people signed the petition favoring a name change at the recreation area—with a number of those from out of town—then some 4,800 Flagler Beach residents would actually be opposed to the name change.

Such reasoning is not generally admissible beyond political bean-counters, with petitions gaining credibility in tandem with the number of verifiable signatures they bear. But the commission this time is behind the smaller petition in favor of changing Gamble Rogers’ name.

“We always have a habit of respecting the city, if they have a request,” County Commission Chairman George Hanns said before the unanimous vote. But he cautioned: “It’s probably going to be difficult at the state level.”

Gamble Rogers Sings Black Label Blues

53 Responses for “Flagler Beach Wins County’s Backing To Kill Gamble Rogers In Recreation Area’s Name”

  1. Jack Howell says:

    I guess loosing your life to try and rescue another’s does not count anymore. The issue is the fact that Gamble Rogers love for his fellow man carries no weight. Shame on you members of the Flagler Beach City Council. And shame on you members of the Flagler County Board of Commissioners for supporting Flagler Beach on this issue.

    • Rose Worley says:

      Sorry that I did not learn of the Namesake of the park until today, It is a shame that the commissioners Yes George Haans and all of the rest of the “Prestigious Flagler County Commisioners”{Ha}decided to change the name, I feel if they would have instead promoted this park as the Jewel it is and why it was named as Gamble Rogers State Park there would have been more than enough interest and Old and New visitors to enjoy this park, You Flagler Commissioners Really dropped the ball with this decision

    • Anonymous says:

      Very well said! I have been in this town since my birth in 1958, and I am ashamed of the officials.

    • Anonymous says:

      Damn Straight, tell em Jack!

  2. confidential says:

    What a shame to rename that park. Leave it as it is…he gave his life trying to save a fellow man! What is going on with you all? Will always be for me Gamble Rogers Park! He died the year after I moved to this county!

  3. Steve Wolfe says:

    This is unfortunately funny with respect to the regard for petitions by the Flagler Beach Commissioners. Once again we see evidence of the “damn the taxpayer” virus among local office holders. They do what they wanna do and use verbal gymnastics to justify themselves like wanna-be big-league politicians in Washington.

    So is it worth taking bets now whether the Flagler County BOCC will respect a petition opposed to raising the gas tax as recently queried on the board? They do have some history of delusion, i.e., having the highest unemployment rate in the state is a GOOD thing. It is political comedy like this that proves it is possible to laugh and cry simultaneously.

  4. Flagler Resident says:

    This elected board, and this community is single handedly one of the most toxic of its kind. When you people think of these things, do you all lack reason and common sense? Do this next time: write or type out your idea, and hit delete, or throw the paper in the garbage.

    You have hired a criminal as a fire captain. You all are constantly in the news, negatively of course. Just when I think you can’t do something dumber than before, you go and do this. Do something positive for the community, heck, spend $600,000 dollars on safety equipment. I understand you do not become an experienced sailor on calm waters, but the path you all take is never paved or welcomed… This commission changes like depends in a nursing home because of these bright ideas.

    This man died in this park attempting something none of you would ever attempt: to save a life. Flagler Beach is not a “brand.” It will never be Daytona Beach, Destin, or Miami. You don’t have a great destination to brand to begin with. This “committee” is a waste of all of your time.

    If you guys want Flagler Beach to be a “brand” and you want this to be a destination people come to visit by itself, then build big buildings on the beach, with expensive luxurious amenities. No one says, “Hey, lets go vacation in Flagler Beach!” Home of the most controversy any one public entity could ever imagine. Illinois would be jealous (minus prison time you guys have them beat big time)!

    Have more to offer families that are from all over the world to do other than lay on the beach. Destin has a pass for world class fishing, a nightlife, and many things for the family, a water parks. Daytona has bike weeks, used to be a premier spot for adolescents enjoying their spring break (not really the crowed you all want down there) and Miami, well, it is Miami.

    There is nothing like this in Flagler Beach… Outside of two restaurants, the commission runs off all other businesses. Heck, the lady can’t even sell ice cream in her van down by the ocean anymore. There is nothing but a worn down pier, Big Al’s bait and tackle, some worn out tires in the grass, and a bunch of nasty old buildings welcoming everyone to the “pristine Flagler Beach!”

    Flagler Beach is branded… unless there is a multimillion dollar stimulus in refurbishments it will never be anything more than what it is now. Leave the man’s name on the park. The day he died, he did more for this community than any of you will ever. And, one last thing, maybe the commission should think outside of their little box they use to think with and recognize him for his heroic actions annually at his event, and instead you all come up with 200 signatures with very sketchy circumstance and say, “Lets change the name and banish his legacy to a small statute in this park.”

    If he was your family member, would you be okay with what you’re doing? If you answer that question with a “no,” then you are doing something wrong!

  5. JR says:

    If people in Flagler Beach weren’t aware of the park before, then I don’t think putting “Flagler Beach,” in the title is going to change that.

    What happened to doing things out of respect? Gamble Rogers cared enough about a stranger to risk, and ultimately give up, his own life. That deserves recognition.

    • mlopez says:

      That’s the point! Flagler Beach is in the title, just not the beginning. How greedy they are not to honor someone who gave his life in an attempt to save another’s!!!

  6. Colleen Conklin says:

    As a family that frequents the park on a regular basis, what a disappointment. There is not a shortage of campers as the site is typically full. They are actually in the process of adding additional camping sites. I can’t imagine what the family of Mr. Rogers would think considering he died there trying to save a fellow camper. I’m struggling to wrap my brain around the purpose of this change. I will admit not being involved or even aware of the committees work on this but my first impression is a major negative reaction. My teenage son is floored that we would actually do something like this. People all around the country are familiar with this great park. If it’s about marketing spend some time learning about meta tags and search engine optimization but don’t disrespect a man who gave his life to save another. I think he’s right.

    • Stacy Crookshank says:

      Again Thank You from a member of Gamble’s family. We appreciate any and all support to keep the name as is. Contact Sen. John Thrasher call, email or write :
      John Thrasher
      113 Nature Walk Parkway, Suite 106
      St. Augustine, Fl. 32092
      ( (04 ) 287-4222
      And Travis Hutson
      4875 Palm Coast Parkway N.W
      Palm Coast Fl. 32137-3671
      And tell them NO NAME CHANGE ( inundate them with calls, letters, emails ) THANK YOU AGAIN !

  7. Groot says:

    Hey, he was a hero! We need heroes!

    • Stacy Crookshank says:

      Contact : Sen John Thrasher
      113 Nature Walk Parkway, Suite 106
      St. Augustine Fl. 32092
      ( 904 ) 287-4222

      Contact : Rep Travis Hutson
      4875 Palm Coast Parkway N.W
      Palm Coast Fl. 32137-3671

      Tell them: NO NAME CHANGE !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  8. Flagler County, you should be so proud to have such a Great Artist as part of your nomenclature. If you could hear this inmensely talented musician today, you would understand the importance he has in the context of the state of Florida and it’s roots. Gamble Rogers brings Flagler County uniqueness and a landmark for his heroic deed. Any location in Florida would be so lucky to be Identitfied with an artist of such caliber. I am surprised that ther isn’t a local festival happening there every year, with live music and headliners of national and international fame. There are books being written about Gamble. I know that those of us who care about our own heroes would love to have his memory preserved for future generations as an honorable man who happened to be the best Musician in the area.

  9. Steve Wolfe says:

    Right, mlopez, but they have signatures on a petition! That’s never happened before, right? Oh, there was 600 signatures on a petition to allow a slower approach to the expenditure of $600,000 of taxpayer’s money, but the board said those are questionable, and they know better than their citizens. After all, F before G ensures more web hits for Flagler Beach, right? Whatever.

    Personally I was hoping that FB would remove the weeds, scrub, and heaved concrete slabs resembling a former public walkway and invest in attractive paver sidewalks and some living palm trees on the west side of A1A, which would make shopping more aesthetically appealing. More foot traffic in front of the shops creates good impressions on passersby. It creates an atmosphere of welcome and the appearance of pride and care for the city’s meat and potatoes. When you hire a fire captain with a questionable ethics background you should apply utmost scutiny to big ticket purchase proposals for his department. And when a board of commissioners discredits public scrutiny of their actions, you might want to double down on them, too.

  10. confidential says:

    County voters went for the incumbents, so that is what you get now! I am glad I didn’t vote for them.

  11. DoubleGator says:

    I had the opportunity to see Gamble perform a couple of times. It was an honor to Flagler County and Flagler Beach to have the park named after him. He was a true Florida cracker and obviously a man of the highest character. We are diminished by the name change. I only suppose those making this move have no measure of the man. A real pity.

  12. snapperhead says:

    I’m a little surprised someone on the Commission didn’t recommend a $500,000 study on the impact of the name change for one of their local supporters firms.

  13. AMOS says:

    You have to be kidding us ????? To the low life’s who started this “petition” please move back to where you came from !!!! Let us guess, next will be the removal of “betty steflicks ” & the “parkers” names from our local parks !!!!! We pray the state will step in & stop such a “discrace” from happening !!! A letter is on it’s way to rick scott to stop this b.S. What is wrong with you people, how do you sleep at night ??????????? “heartless”!!!

    • Stacy Crookshank says:

      I second that, Let’s start a petition to send them back where they came from !!!!

      • Anonymous says:

        Stacy I wholeheartedly agree we need to start a petition for this. As a 33 year resident of Flagler Beach and a friend of Gambles whom mentored my wife Michelle since the time she met him in Winter Park in 1969 I am appalled at the insensitivity of our city and county commissioners. James Gamble Roger what the greatest musician and humanitarian that this state has produced.He was an ambasador for Florida not only here but throughout the nation. The legislature chose not only to honor him for this but also to elect him to the Florida artists Hall of Fame. He was a friend and my mentor are to a multitude of musiciansincluding a young man from Alabama who we met in Miami by the name of Jimmy Buffett. If you read the liner notes on Jimmy’s first album he credits gamble with teaching him how to hold an audience’s attention. I cannot believe these people would questionthe judgment of not only the legislature butt also all the people of this state you consider Gamble of folk hero. You can count on me to help in anyway I can to stop this.Iwill not only send this to Rep. Huston and Sen Thresher but alai to the head ofthe Florida Park Service Don Forgione . Please contact me at 386-5979335 to help.

        • Steve Lowe says:

          I didn’t mean for my previous comment to be anonymous. I very much want my name on this post.if I can figure out how to do it
          I will forward this to my many musician friends in St Augustine who are also good friends of Gamble’s as well as my many friends in Flagler Beach who I know will support this

          • Stacy Crookshank says:

            Hi Steve, Thank You for your kind words and sharing a little of your history of Gamble, and anything you can think to do or anyone you can think to call or write or email to get this passed around the country is already a big help, I have no huge plan I am just trying to reach as many people as possible to let them know that WE ( all who love Gamble and everything he stood for ) will not stand for this.
            Inundate Thrasher, Hutson and anyone else you can possibly imagine to stop this travesty.

            I have your # and may call you, but want you to understand there has been nothing planned as of yet for a petition, But I am prepared to do that if we need to. Stacy Crookshank.

  14. friend of Gamble Roger says:

    How gosh of the City representatives of Flagler Beach, How can any group of people be so uncultured as representatives of a City? If you want to understand Gamble Rogers State Memorial Park then visit see what is there. It’s not very big, but folks visit from all over the world. And yes they shop and travel thru the City of Flager Beach to get there. What more can you ask for. A jewel as part of the city of Flagler beach. People are fascinated by history and Flagler Beach has it right in front of thier nose. Don’t cut your nose to spite your face. Gamble Rogers is Part of your history and you can Change the name but not the history. Mr. Gamble Rogers visited and died trying to protect another at Flagler Beach State park. What better Thankyou to one of your visitors than to thank him by naming the park in his name.We are not a black and white world we have color all the colors of the rainbow. Accept it and move on Its a name of an honorable person not a brand to be used as a commercial endeavor. What’s next Moody Blvd? Thanks

  15. Diane J Cline says:

    I saw this yesterday and wanted to speak up and didn’t…but after seeing Mark Lane’s article today I realized I had to. Please stop…what you are doing is embarrassing and has the to potential to backlash in our faces putting a black mark beside our name as opposed to the star you seek. As Pierre has stated, the park stays full! Obviously the name isn’t holding it back. Obviously the visitors know the town is close by. Maybe the committee should be concentrating more on how to utilize the income stream that is already in place as opposed to destroying it! If you would consult with a marketing expert I’m sure you would be told that we were not given a “lemon” but instead we were given a lifetime opportunity to make lemonade. Tap into this wonderful man’s fan base and provide them with an opportunity to continue to enjoy him. You say you want to brand our town as eco friendly…hello…Gamble Rogers was a king of eco…he chose our town to camp in! And, then he gave his life for another. It doesn’t get much more noble than that and if someone doesn’t know his story it should be our job to tell them. Gamble Rogers Day…CD’s, T-Shirts, books…and the chance to share a very worthwhile man’s journey and mission.

  16. MCD says:

    It’s unfortunate that the commission is neglecting its duty to protect the community’s cultural assets. It would be just as easy to celebrate the cultural heritage that comes with the name Gamble Rogers by incorporating it into the branding effort. Don’t try to make Flagler something it’s not, but instead embrace your history and culture. We know who Gamble Rogers is over here in Tampa, why don’t y’all?

  17. Stevensl says:

    We also know who Gamble Rogers is up here in Canada. (Heck, any time I hear someone say the word ‘Nostalgia!’, I hear his voice;-)
    Henry Flagler may be an important figure up and down Florida but Flagler Beach has a unique opportunity to distinguish itself by associating with Rogers. A lovely man whose talents and reputation only reflect well on the area that has adopted him as their symbol.

  18. Kate Wagner says:

    I am a fifth generation Floridian, whose ancestors included a signer of the Florida Constitution. I am also honored to have considered Gamble Rogers a friend. The returning of the park name to its original is an insult to all and a disgrace to the State of Florida. It is sad that there are those who know so little of their home and community and never bothered to learn for whom the park was named.

  19. LRM says:

    To Kim Carney: Who says Flagler Beach doesn’t want to go down that road? I didn’t.

  20. Educated says:

    I say it’s a good change. Change is good. Bring in more tourism to the city so our businesses can strive. This ain’t the good ole boy town anymore!

  21. Lance Carroll says:

    It is absurd to even begin to think of changing the name. This current city commission panel, along with the mayor deserve to be voted out! Toxic batch, they are! Clean house Flagler Beach voters!

  22. Lance Carroll says:

    Where can I pick up a copy of this ridiculous petition?

  23. Rob says:

    If you think that politicians give a flying crap about what you think or want YOU’RE WRONG.

    At least until election time.

  24. don't buy from bailed out says:

    Last time I checked, there were approx 1.4 million US soldiers, police officers and Firefighters killed in service to this country. If a second rate folk singer from the 80/90’s gets a park named after him for going into the ocean as a bad swimmer with a bad back on a float meant to be used in a pool – what the hell are all of you thinking.

    With your logic, I think we need about 993,000 new parks named after them. OH and the original Jimmy Buffet is Jimmy Buffet – sorry

  25. Steve Wardrip says:

    Gamble Rogers Memorial State Recreation Area is one reason I chose to move to Flagler Beach. A sensible city government was the second reason. I am accessing the second reason before I make the move.

  26. Ashley Capitola says:

    I can’t think of anything more disrespectful than to change the name of a park that was named after someone who died saving someone else’s life. Money is the root of all evil. That is all that matters to the city. What a joke.

  27. Liberty says:

    Don’t let them change the name! That doesn’t add value, it cheapens the culture of the city. Some things need to stay for the people who have lived in, and loved, Flagler. Don’t take away a piece of our history. Very disappointing to see this proposed and gathering any level of support.

  28. StevenX says:

    The only silver lining is that they aren’t calling it the Bank Of America Park. Yet.

  29. Jim Neuenfeldt says:

    Here is a novel idea……
    Lets change the name of Flagler Beach to Gamble Rogers Beach Florida!
    Yeah it won’t be copied, and will be unique and match the name of the park that coincidentally is owned by the STATE of Florida…Yes all of Florida not just that town named Flagler Beach which thinks it is autonomous in the way it should conduct it self…Or Flagler Beach could also secede from the United States all together and form it’s own country!
    Utopia found at last in Gamble Rogers Beach, Serenity indeed!

  30. Maureen jeffreys says:

    Not a good idea. I enjoy Flagler Beach for the laid back vibe. Part of that is Gamble Rogers. The name ever and history should be shared. It should be remembered as Gamble Rogers.

  31. AStevenson says:

    This makes me CRAZY. Reminder: Flagler County, Beach, College, and the former Flagler State Park etc, etc, etc – ALL are/were named after another person: Henry Flagler, founder of Standard Oil, robber baron, Florida developer, railroad tycoon. This is a “brand” honoring a man representing what particular set of values exactly? Money? Now it is suggested that the small Gamble Rogers State Park, should be stripped of its name and be RE “branded” to Flagler State Park? I prefer the brand Gamble Rogers reflected in the values he displayed both life AND in death. In fact, I would sign a petition renaming Flagler County/Beach/College to Gamble Rogers County/Beach/College. Brand that.

  32. Stacy Crookshank says:

    Sen. John Thrasher 113 Nature Walk Parkway, Suite 106 St.Augustine, Florida 32092 ( 904 ) 287-4222

    Rep. Travis Hutson Unit 5 4875 Palm Coast Parkway NW Palm Coast Fl. 32137-3671
    (386) 446-7644

    KEEP THE NAME ! ! ! WRITE, CALL, EMAIL , Spread the word !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    Thank You everyone for your support and love for the man who deserves so much more than this !

  33. Steve Clancy says:

    Michelle Brown, how can you say people are not familiar with Gamble Rogers? His park is booked for a year solid. He’s a Legend and a Hero! I think Henry Flagler himself would be ashamed at all of you. Very selfish. He might even say, “I don’t want a gift shop named after me!”

  34. ryan says:

    Disgraceful, just disgraceful. Seems like all over the country these days people have a problem with heroes or those who try to do things to help others. I guess some worthless degenerates think it makes others that don’t lift a finger to help anyone else feel worthless or that it is an underlying insult to them to honor someone who would help someone. As if we don’t have real problems around here that need taken care of. Also, in an age where youth looks up to criminals, gang members, and obnoxious idiots like Russell Brand or Michael Vick, we need to give our kids some good examples of people like Gamble Rogers to look up to. I hope we can bring more awareness to the community about Mr. Rogers and how dishonorable it is to remove someone’s name who died trying to save someone else’s life from a state park. It really does reflect the atmosphere of “not welcome here” in this community.

  35. James Locher says:

    I only became aware of Flagler Beach and the Gamble Rogers Park upon doing a search for the awesome guitarist storyteller and selfless hero Gamble Rogers. I’ve told the Gamble Rogers story to hundreds of people. What better free positive publicity could a city and a park possibly get? Imagine the story I will tell if the council is so narrowminded as to remove his name from the park title. Not good publicity.

  36. Greg Everett says:

    If this is a State Park, how does the City or County have any right to change the name?

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