Hurricane Charley Changed Punta Gorda

by Mike Miller
(Naples, Florida)

Punta Gorda Florida Indian

Punta Gorda Florida Indian

Hurricane Charley slammed into Punta Gorda, Florida on Friday the 13th of August, 2004.


My sailboat, AWOL, was in Burnt Store Marina south of town. She lost her mast, bimini top, bow sprit, bow pulpit and lifelines.

It was enough damage that the insurance company had to ponder for some time whether to fix or scrap her. Fixing won out, and she was towed to the nearest boatyard that didn't have a huge hurricane-related backlog. That was Sailors Wharf up in St. Pete.

The wind damage to homes, especially mobile homes, was devasting in the area around Punta Gorda and surrounding Charlotte County.

The familiar blue tarp covering a badly damaged roof was the signature of thousands of homes in the area for the next couple of years.

A friend of mine who lives aboard his sailboat stayed aboard during the storm. He took pictures and videos of the whole event as the winds and tide screeched through Burnt Store Marina.

Although these visual records were helpful with my insurance company, no amount of beer should convince a person to stay aboard a boat during a hurricane. He is lucky to be alive.

The defiant red Indian that stood for years at a Punta Gorda motel survived Charley, but the motel didn't fare as well. The Indian was moved to a new location, but is no longer red.

The wind driven sand and debris gave the poor old guy an effective dermabrasion, and he is now a paleface.

Click here to post comments

Join in and write your own page! It's easy to do. How? Simply click here to return to Florida Tales.

Much of the information in our website is available in a series of books for each of Florida's eight geographical regions, along with a separate book covering the entire state titled Florida Backroads Travel. All books are available in Kindle versions and some in soft cover format also.

Click on the book cover for free previews of these books at Amazon.



This  book   shows you 50 nifty places to visit on less than a tank of gas from major Florida cities.

Click on the cover for a free preview at Amazon.com


Email

First Name




Enjoy our free monthly ezine with news of day trips, towns, inns, festivals, food, history and more.

Recent Articles

  1. Montverde Florida: An Old Florida Town On Lake Apopka

    Feb 25, 17 12:30 PM

    Montverde Florida is a quiet town of less than 1,000 people on the west shore of Lake Apopka. It is about 23 miles west of Orlando.

    Read More

  2. Miami Marine Stadium Faces Extinction. Can It Be Saved?

    Feb 25, 17 12:28 PM

    Miami Marine Stadium is on the National Trust For Historic Preservation 11 Most Endangered Historic Places List. Will Miamians decide to save this old treasure?

    Read More

  3. Flavet Villages at the University of Florida

    Feb 22, 17 12:15 AM

    I attended the University of Florida in Gainvesville, Florida from 1963 until graduation in 1966. It probably would have been too expensive for me to

    Read More