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GARDEN 222 Sam Gibbons, WW II Army Officer and Politician

Posted By jaleesa watson, Saturday, April 05, 2014

Veterans of Foreign Wars

350 SW 25th St, Fort Lauderdale, FL 33315


Sam M. Gibbons was born on January 20, 1920 in Tampa, Florida. He was best known for being a legislator for 44 years and through 5 decades he never lost an election. Mr. Gibbons was elected to the Florida House of Representatives in 1952, the Florida Senate in 1958 and to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1962. He spearheaded the effort to create the University of South Florida. Before his retirement from Congress, he served as chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee. In 1938, he went to the University of Florida in but joined the Army immediately after his junior year. At the age of 24 he was a captain in the 101st Airborne Division on June 6, 1944, the first day of the Allied invasion of France. At 1:00 a.m. on D-day, June 6, 1944, Capt. Gibbons jumped out of a C-47 along with 501st Parachute Infantry Regiment, 101st Airborne Division and they all arrived by parachute near Carentan, France on the Cotentin Peninsula. He left the service after five years, having earned a Bronze Star and four battle stars. He returned to the University of Florida and I chose to plant my garden in memory of Sam M. Gibbons at the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States because Mr. Gibbons was not only a war veteran, but a veteran of a foreign war. He has left a legacy just as many of our military veterans have left legacies and worked hard to defend America to allow others to leave their legacies.


 Credit this photo: State Archives of Florida, Florida Memory,



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