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This week in history 11/22/2023

Posted 11/22/23

Word of the Week is a feature that aims to help readers boost their vocabulary in a meaningful way that has practical application. Each week, our editorial staff presents a word, its definition and …

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This week in history 11/22/2023



Five years ago, 2018

• Over 50 Orange Park Police and Clay County Sheriff’s officers surrounded an Orange Park house after receiving a falsely reported incident of a suicidal man who had killed two people in his home with an AK-47. Orange Park Police Chief Gary Goble said the false call was a “swatting” prank.

• Myron William Ernst, who robbed two Clay County banks with a stolen vehicle, was deemed a flight risk and a danger to the community. In one robbery, a passed note read: “I have a gun I will blow your brains out & everyone else in the bank $2,500 in 100’s no dye packs no alarms no tracking devices you have 30 seconds.” Ernst would eventually plead guilty and be sentenced to 10 years in prison.



10 years ago, 2013

• State Sen. Rob Bradley and Representatives Travis Cummings and Charles Van

Zant, Sr. were encouraged by Green Cove Springs Mayor Mitch Timberlake and their other constituents to expedite the construction of the First Coast Outer Beltway. Orange Park Mayor Jim Renninger told the three legislators that cities need a better definition of allowable phosphates in their wastewater system discharges.

• In Green Cove Springs, a committee of private citizens planned a city archives center on the ground floor of City Hall. The citizens encouraged historic preservation for Spring Park, the St. Johns River waterfront and the eight blocks of Walnut Street stretching westward from the river.



20 years ago, 2003

• The Clay Board of Commissioners voted to spend $130,000 to buy two tracts of land in downtown Green Cove Springs to allow expansion of the Clay County Council on Aging’s headquarters at 604 Walnut St.

• The Oscar-winning film “Master & Commander” starring Russell Crowe and the Dr. Seuss film “The Cat in the Hat” debuted at the Clay Theatre in Green Cove Springs.




30 years ago, 1993

• Clay County Schools officials announced that a planned new elementary

school north of Middleburg off Old Jennings Road would be named after the former School Superintendent Jesse Tynes, who served from 1965 to 1985 when the district grew from 5,000 to 20,000 students.

• Lil’ Champ Food Stores were boycotted and picketed by a Christian group claiming the convenience store chain was the largest retailer of pornography in Florida.



40 years ago, 1983

• The Clay County School Board voted to allow county voters to determine whether a $25 million bond issue should go forward. School Superintendent Jesse Tynes said the money was needed to repair current schools and build future schools that would be needed with growth.

• Officials with Humana Hospital in Orange Park teamed up with Ray Boylan, meteorologist for Channel 12 in Jacksonville, to kick off “The Great American Smokeout,” a national anti-smoking campaign.