The full question:
“Who was the elderly man who worked the grill at Johnnie Mercers Fishing Pier for years and years until the pier was replaced post-hurricane?”
And the answer:
There were several men who worked at the pier during the 1980s and 1990s that match your description. Your follow-up email points, however, to John Abbott, recognized in a 1979 Morning Star clip as “Big John” Abbott.
Smokey Adams was the “man-in-charge” at the pier then. “Just chatting with Adams and his sidekick “Big John” Abbott, can be an experience in itself,” Brenda Overman wrote.
Abbott worked at the pier around 20 or 25 years, said Matt Johnson, pier manager.
Johnson said Abbott did most everything at the pier — cooking, selling fishing tickets, fixing rods and reels, getting change for the arcade.
Johnson said he believes Abbott retired in the late 1990s and worked some flea markets after that. He passed on within the last five or six years, Johnson said.
Date posted: January 17, 2012
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