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Grandson of Rock Lake Resort builder says a final goodbye

Reporter: Taylor Wirtz Writer: Matthew Seaver
Published: Updated:

Part of the Rock Lake Resort near downtown Fort Myers is set to be demolished at the end of the month, and one person has made the trip to say a final goodbye to a city staple of more than 80 years.

Michael George is the grandson of James Moore, the original owner of the Rock Lake Resort.

To some, the Rock Lake Resort is just a landmark they pass by on the way to downtown Fort Myers, but to George and his sister, it’s their family legacy.

(Credit: Michael George)

“So in the 40s, my grandfather returned from World War II, and he wanted a place to sort of raise a family but also be his business. The lake you see behind us, he dredged it himself and used all the limestone to actually build the cottages,” said George. “We would spend all of our time here, and my grandfather was really into the wildlife. And he actually had a herd of like, 200 ducks on the property that would follow him around. And there was an eight-foot gator that lived in the lake at that time. So it kind of felt like growing up on a nature preserve in some ways.”

George’s family sold the place to a trusted buyer in the 90s, but it still has a special place in their hearts.

When they got the news that a new buyer intended to knock down the cottages, they came down as quick as they could to bid one last farewell to the place that holds so many memories.

“This felt like the last connection we had to our family in many ways, and so knowing it’s going away, it feels a little bit like that chapter is ending,” said George. “There’s one guy who’s been coming here every week for 25 years. Like there’s just a lot of people that fell in love with it and would come back and back again. And they like us are so sad that it’s going away because it really feels like a hidden gem.”

George and his sister say they don’t know who bought the resort or what they intend to do with it. Goerge said he hopes whatever they do, they preserve a piece of his family’s history.