Tallahassee coach has native Perry on the mind, encourages donations

Tallahassee coach supports hometown of Perry
Published: Sep. 1, 2023 at 8:50 PM EDT
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TALLAHASSEE, Fla. (WCTV) - A volunteer Parks and Rec coach in Tallahassee can’t stop thinking of home.

Frank Gantt, who once quarterbacked the Taylor County High School team in the 80s, now spends his retirement coaching soccer, T-ball and other sports in the capital city.

He grew up in a low-income neighborhood and Perry, and he said he was “heartbroken” as he saw Hurricane Idalia tear threw Taylor County and the Big Bend.

“That’s home for me,” he said. “I have family and friends down there. I don’t want them to be suffering. I don’t want them to think about where their next check is coming from...because a lot of jobs were lost. A lot of buildings destroyed.”

Gantt is worried that those who live in the poorer neighborhoods may get left behind as the whole community works to rebuild. He canceled a Labor Day Weekend vacation and instead is using the funds to organize a barbecue in the neighborhood where he grew up.

“Chipping in to have a little barbecue down there. Let the kids play, have fun. Also clean up at the same time. Try to get them back to some type of normalcy right,” he said. “Hey it’s going to be alright.”

He is organizing a supply drive with the families of the children he coaches, and encourages everyone to find a supply drive in the community and donate.

WCTV has organized a list of ways to donate to those affected by Idalia.

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