Ford inducted into Fishing Hall of Fame By Lorna Jablonski, Okeechobee News – Long-time Okeechobee angler Harvey Ford was inducted into the Treasure Coast Sport Fishing Hall of Fame for his expertise and contributions to Florida freshwater fishing. Courtesy photo
Long-time angler and local resident Harvey Ford was inducted into the Treasure Coast Sport Fishing Hall of Fame at the Inaugural Treasure Coast Sport Fishing Expo & Hall of Fame Induction held at the Treasure Coast Mall Saturday, May 21, for his contributions to Florida freshwater fishing.
“I’ve never been speechless before, but I’m just about there,” stated Mr. Ford during the induction ceremony.
Mr. Ford is a true Floridian and angler. He was born in Ocoee on May 20, 1932. He started fishing at the age of 2 with his grandfather, Perry Ford, and has never stopped. He began to take a serious interest in bass fishing while still in school. He fished the B.A.S.S. Tournament Trail in 1983 and 1984, as well as many individual tourneys. He has been involved with FLW Outdoors since it began as the Red Man Tournament Trail. He fished all three of the Red Man circuits, which have since developed into the BFL, EverStart and FLW.
Mr. Ford and his wife Virginia founded and ran the popular Okee-Tantie Team Trail for 10 years before turning the reins over to fellow angler Larry Crossman. This trail is known as the toughest tournament trail on Lake Okeechobee and is well attended season after season.
The Fords have been members of the Guys & Dolls Tournament for 15 years.
Mr. Ford is past president of the Taylor Creek Bass Club. This club supports the community’s kids with a local Kids Day Tournament that has 300-400 kids participating every year. He is also past president of the Florida B.A.S.S. Federation with approximately 1,800 members who fish, and promote youth and conservation activities.
In 1991 Mr. Harvey was instrumental in promoting and building the weigh-in station at thee Okee-Tantie Campground and Marina. Unfortunately, last year’s hurricanes destroyed it.
In addition to his involvement in fishing, Mr. Ford is a civic-minded individual. He is a Lifetime V.F.W., American Legion, Masonic Lodge, Scottish Rite and Okeechobee Shrine Club member. He was involved in the formation of the Okeechobee Tourist Development Council and was a member from its inception until 1992.
Mr. Ford’s induction into the new Treasure Coast Sport Fishing Hall of Fame was the culmination of many years of dedication and hard work to a sport that Mr. Ford has always loved.
Mr. Ford received a smaller version of the honorary granite plaque that will appear in a spotlight case at the Treasure Coast Mall in Jensen Beach within the next 30 days.
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