News

Green Cove Springs crash snarls traffic on SR 16

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- A crash Friday morning closed one eastbound lane of State Road 16 near the Shands Bridge in Green Cove Springs.

According to Florida Highway Patrol Trooper M. Donaldson, a black Volvo heading west on SR 16 crossed center line and hit a box truck heading east, sending it down a grassy hill on the shoulder.

A convoy of National Guard members who were in traffic and saw the accident, stopped at the scene and put out a fire before officials arrived.

FHP and the Clay County Sheriff's Office also responded to the crash.

Both drivers suffered minor injuries, which Donaldson said is a shock based on damage to the vehicles involved.

Donaldson also added the area is a problem, as three road side memorials are visible at the scene of the crash.

Marching to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- Friends and family of Melissa Boyett marched in her honor to find a cure for Cystic Fibrosis.

Melissa passed away on April 23, but lived a life full of joy and experienced more than most people ever will in her short 23 years.

Team "Marching for Melissa" met Saturday at the Orange Park Kennel Club.  They walked to raise funds for Cystic Fibrosis research.

You can donate to the Cystic Fibrosis Foundation in Melissa's name here.

Armed Forces Day military museum

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. -- It's Armed Forces week and U.S. Veteran Herb Steiglman tells Good Morning Jacksonville how a military museum in Green Cove Springs plans to honor military men and women. 

Vietnam War Memorial Wall replica comes to Green Cove Springs

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- The traveling Vietnam War Memorial made its way to Green Cove Springs on Thursday.

It is a replica of the names etched onto the Vietnam War Memorial in Washington DC. For people who are not able to get to the District, the event is a way for the wall to come to them. There are more than 58,000 names on the replica wall.

Several people at the event told First Coast News they lost loved ones in the war. The names of the fallen are etched both on the wall in the nation's capitol and on the traveling wall. Others who served in Vietnam told FCN what the traveling wall means to them as they thought about friends they lost during the time of war.

The event was made possible by the Clay County Junior/Senior High School Beta club. Two student members told FCN their group raised about $10,000 for the traveling wall to be able to come to their school and serve the community and region.

Board Chairman: Superintendent told us not to talk to staff

CLAY COUNTY, Fla. -- The combative relationship between the Superintendent of Clay County School and the School Board has reached a new level.

A new directive laid out by Superintendent Charlie Van Zant has many upset.

Clay County school superintendent Charlie Van Zant and the school board have been at odds over several issues since Van Zant's election in the fall. So much so the Chamber of Commerce wrote a letter to both parties asking them to cool it because it was hurting the reputation of the county.

The latest salvo fired by the Superintendent this week: If you are a member of the Clay County School Board and want to ask a question of the school system staff, don't.

That is what school board Chairman Carol Studdard said she was told this week by a staff member. She said she was told if she or any school board member had a question, take it to Van Zant.

Studdard doesn't like it one bit.

Chasing the 'Putnam County Poacher' leads to unlikely friendship

PUTNAM COUNTY, Fla. -- Friendships often begin in unlikely places and situations. 

Those unique circumstances give the friends something to bond them for life.

This is especially true for Bob Lee and Roger Gunter, who, despite knowing each other for more than 30 years, are only taking their second fishing trip together.

"I've gone bass fishing with him one other time," Lee said.

That's strange considering how much both men love to fish, and how big the outdoors have been in their lives.

This trip is on the Ocklawaha River in Putnam County, a search for large mouth bass.

"Boss man," as Roger refers to Bob, "You ain't got no beer in here," he shouted while they loaded up the boat.

"Dang it, Roger, it's not even noon yet," Bob replied.

The two still have a lot to learn in their budding friendship.

Yes, the men have known each other for three decades. 

But they're only just now becoming friends.

Clay County Sheriff's Office honors the fallen

GREEN COVE SPRINGS, Fla. -- Fallen officers were honored by the Clay County Sheriff's Office this morning at 10 a.m.

The memorial honored eight fallen officers along with their families as part of the annual Police Memorial Week, according to a Clay County Sheriff's Office press release.

During the memorial, the office also revealed a new Law Enforcement Monument at the entrance of the facility.

The monument includes a granite memorial wall, two granite benches, a new flag pole as well as engraved memorial pavers at the entrance of the grounds.