Fort Myers Beach community responds to 84-year-old vet’s tragic tale

Reporter: Kellie Miller Writer: Rachel Murphy
Published: Updated:
Trailer in front of Salvaggio’s home CREDIT WINK News

Joe Salvaggio’s story touched the people of Fort Myers Beach, and two detectives from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office visited him.

The 84-year-old veteran’s wife passed away months before Hurricane Ian. Salvaggio is still trying to rebuild his home. After giving a contractor $40,000 in April, he hasn’t heard from them since.

“They called me and said, ‘Two detectives are going to come down. They want to speak with you.’ They came down, and I said, ‘I don’t really know why you’re here. I didn’t call you,'” Salvaggio said. “He said, ‘No, we saw the interview on television, and we wanted to make sure there wasn’t any criminal activity involved.’ And I told them.”

When WINK News spoke to the detectives, they agreed to call later.

The primary contractor called WINK News and conducted a full phone interview defending himself against the accusations.

Salvaggio’s story touched so many people, including Congressman Byron Donalds, who tweeted about his story and said it is a great example of the community coming together.

In the meantime, Dave Drumm, the owner of Reflow Plumbing, a Fort Myers Beach company, offered to do all of Salvaggio’s plumbing for free.

“Oh, yeah. We’ll send six trucks over there and talk the whole thing out,” Drumm said.

Copyright ©2024 Fort Myers Broadcasting. All rights reserved.

This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed without prior written consent.