Chevron – Mosquito fighter, gasoline station proprietor… The top of an period is marked with the retirement if Clyde Nabers
BY MISTY NABERS NICHOLS- After virtually 60 years serving the Boca Grande Group Clyde Nabers is lastly going to be spending his weekdays fishing. On October 30, Clyde retired for the second time. In case you have been in Boca Grande for greater than 20 years you’ll keep in mind Nabers Chevron, which sat on the northwest nook of 4th and Park in downtown Boca Grande. Clyde and spouse Carolyn are each island natives. Clyde started his life on the north finish of the island. His granddad, Gus Cole, owned the IGA and was Postmaster on the Put up Workplace that was inside the shop. Clyde’s Mother, Gussie, helped within the retailer. When Clyde was six the fishery moved its operation to Placida to truck fish out and never need to rely on the railroad. When his grandad retired Clyde’s Dad (additionally Clyde) and Gussie took over working the shop and the Placida Put up workplace. Clyde’s Dad was Postmaster and his mother turned Assistant Postmaster.
Carolyn was born and raised proper within the coronary heart of Boca Grande. Her dad and mom ran the fish home and marketplace for virtually 50 years. Clyde and Carolyn have been married in 1961 and bought the Fuel Station in 1963. They have been of their early 20s once they bought the station and it was a household run operation with Clyde doing mechanical work and Carolyn holding the books.
Clyde labored lengthy days on the Station and each a kind of days started with the “coffee Klatch.” This was a gaggle of fellows that gathered each morning to begin the day ingesting espresso and catching up on island enterprise. The group included many over time, Doc Wright, Nat Italiano, Braxton Bowen, Bumps Johnson, Jay Lumly, Ted Smith, Sam Parkinson, Invoice Hinman, Ed Davis, Babe Darna, Rick Busby, Drayton Farr, Ted Bylaska, Forrest Stover, George Curtis, Joe Savarese, various the island’s monks and pastors and lots of others. They drank dangerous espresso, informed tales and drew numbers every day to see who was shopping for.
Within the early days of the Station, Clyde additionally served on the BG volunteer fireplace division, maintained the mills on the Clinic, ran the heavy tools that dug the lake on the north finish of the island, and sometimes labored serving to to load the ships that got here into the phosphate dock. The truth is, Clyde was a Volunteer Fireman when Miller’s Marina caught fireplace. He recollects being the primary one on website for the 1975 blaze. Clyde and Carolyn’s children, Mike and Misty, grew up within the station. Enjoying on the automotive elevate, sweeping the workplace and storage, sometimes pumping gasoline, filling the coke machine and rolling quarters.
From the time he began the enterprise in 1963 till the time he offered it and retired in 1999, Clyde saved winter residents’ automobiles working throughout the summer time, drove a number of residents’ automobiles again north every spring, and would assist anybody whose automotive wouldn’t begin, whether or not it was the midnight or Christmas morning. Some long-time prospects of the station would even name Clyde in the event that they locked themselves out of their automotive, or home and one resident even known as when her canine ran off.
The workplace on the station was stuffed with fish mounts that got here from Carolyn’s Dad, Tommy Parkinson. There was a big set of shark Jaws from a bull shark caught by son Mike. An image of daughter Misty leaning off a tower 20’ over a pool, fish in her month, bottlenose dolphin inches from her chin. And several other Trophy deer from a number of of Clyde’s profitable searching journeys.
It was eclectic and welcoming, in actual fact Nabers Chevron was the center of city, actually and figuratively. When you wished to compensate for island happenings, wanted assist along with your automobile or wished to borrow a device, Clyde was the person to see. Clyde recollects when the streets rolled up at 6 p.m. the one place to get a Coke was the Nabers Chevron Coke machine. He stated “the machine outside the Service Station became the hang out for island kids but they always left it in order and there was never a sign of vandalism”
In 1999, Clyde and Carolyn determined to promote the station and retire. Sam Murphy and Ann, Buzz and John Watkins threw a retirement celebration on the station that changed into a block celebration. Many island residents got here out to have fun the top of an period. A few of these in attendance even recommended placing a marker within the sidewalk on the nook of 4th and Park that learn “Clyde’s Corner”. Clyde appreciated the sentiment however humbly declined. Quickly after that, the station was torn down. In his mid-50s, Clyde determined he wasn’t fairly able to retire and Carolyn would say she married him for all times however not for lunch.
When islander Ed Davis retired from his place at Lee County Mosquito Management Clyde noticed it as a chance and took on the position of Mosquito Management Officer for Boca Grande. For the final 20+ years Clyde has served the island defending Island Residents from an onslaught of mosquitoes. He drove the lure truck, flew to outer islands to do larval testing, walked into the extra distant components of Boca Grande to examine for mosquitoes, he directed the aerial spraying, loaded the helicopters, and drove the spray truck. After all, there have been many different duties that got here together with the County place that he held for over 20 years.
On October 30, with out fanfare, Clyde stepped out of the helicopter and stepped into retirement for the second time. To have fun, he had his scooter boat decked out with a brand new engine and has his fishing gear able to go. So, in case you are seeking to meet up with Clyde lately you’ll most definitely want to go out into the again bay to seek out him. He says he’s all the time up for a very good speak so long as it isn’t about how dangerous the mosquitoes are or the unusual sound your automotive is making.
Above, Clyde’s final day on the island’s mosquito management heart. At proper, Clyde within the previous gasoline station.