Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Lunch with Friends Travels ‘Back in Time’ with Wells Moses Sawyer

Photos by Maria Lamb | Historical re-enactor, Carolyn Rosenfeld, as Wells Moses Sawyer, reads his letters written onboard the Silver Spray.

Save the Date: May 15th at 11 AM is the next Lunch with Friends. RSVP to:

At the recent Lunch with Friends, attendees were transported to a time circa 1895-96 as they listened to Wells Sawyers’ letters from the Silver Spray.

Special guest, Carolyn Rosenfeld, a Marco Island Historical Society re-enactor, read letters written by Wells Sawyer while he was a member of Frank Cushing’s Pepper-Hearts Expedition to Tarpon Springs and Key Marco in 1896. Wells Sawyer, along with 12 other crew members, lived on board the Silver Spray. He was the official photographer and artist for the expedition.

Carolyn Rosenfeld read one of Wells Sawyer’s letters: “It is a world of water dotted with islands which looks like great green buttons on the beautiful sea, for the colors of the Gulf are unlike those one sees on the Atlantic, and these island keys differ from those of the northern waters.

“This is not land except where the people who lived here many centuries ago built. They came in canoes and lived on the oyster bed eating the oysters and throwing away the shells until out of the sea they reared a bit of land made of shells. We hope to find out more about how these ancient people built up their places of dwelling.”

To complete the experience, Carolyn Rosenfeld suggested reading “Key Marco Florida, a Material Culture” by Marion Gilliland and “Key Marco’s Buried Treasure” also by Marion Gilliland along with a visit to the Marco Island Historical Museum.

Photos by Maria Lamb | Fred Garvin, WWII Navy veteran celebrated his 94th birthday at the recent Lunch with Friends. He also won a door prize.

Meeting new friends is one big reason for the success of the monthly luncheon. Fred Garvin is a regular attendee to the luncheons, but this is his first time at Marco’s Lutheran Church location.

On April 17th, Fred Garvin celebrated his 94th birthday with a room full of friends. The pre-Easter luncheon of baked ham was homecooked by Maria Giacomucci and Ron McClay, complete with decadent slices of cake and plates filled with cookies. Just to make it more special for Fred, he also took home a door prize.

Fred Garvin is easygoing, always willing to engage in a conversation, especially about his experiences during World War II while on a destroyer escort on the USS Koiner. Fred enlisted in the Navy before his 18th birthday. He is proud to tell you that he “crossed the Atlantic 18 times” – that would be nine roundtrips on the USS Koiner.

Before he left, Fred wanted to show the writer a photo of himself at age 90 with his navy uniform. Fred lost his home to Irma and is now living at Naples’ Lely Palms.

Luncheon guests were invited to visit/shop the Food Pantry located at the Family Church on Winterberry Drive.

Lunches are held monthly on the third Wednesday at 11 AM. Please RSVP to Nancy Kot by phone (706-566-8532) or email ( The next luncheon is on May 15, 2019.


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