The story I am going to tell you today is a legend. I don’t know whether it’s true – but I rather hope that it is. But before I get to that, I’m going to tell you several things that are absolutely true that all come together in the story of Fort Lauderdale, Johnny Weissmuller and the International Swimming Hall of Fame.
I know, it sounds a bit far-fetched already but this is completely true. As soon as we get to the legend I’ll let you know.
Let’s start with Fort Lauderdale. I imagine that everyone reading this knows where Fort Lauderdale is but there’s a handy map below, just in case. I run two wonderful self-catering apartments there (again, see below for details) located on one of the famous Las Olas finger islands not far from the beach.
Johnny Weissmuller became famous in the middle of the last century. He was an Olympic swimmer who became a Hollywood star playing the part of jungle-man, Tarzan of the Apes. In the mid-sixties, now retired, he moved to Fort Lauderdale. This is true but the part of the story I haven’t been able to verify is the legend that Weissmuller too, just like me, used to live on one of the finger islands.
Another fact is that when he moved here to Fort Lauderdale he became a director of the new (and still existing) International Swimming Hall of Fame – not too far away near the beach.
Okay, so here is…..
Who knows, it might be true. The story goes that when Johnny Weissmuller wanted to go to work in the morning, he didn’t hop into his car as most of us would. His workplace wasn’t far away but he didn’t walk to work.
After all, he lived on one of the finger isles so the canal was right in front of his house. And the International Swimming Hall of Fame was nearby – it was certainly no big deal for an Olympic swimmer, let alone the bloke who single-handedly wrestled with gorillas and lions.
So, I’ve no idea if the story is true but I can just imagine Tarzan leaping off the end of an island and into the canal giving his famous Tarzan call…
I do hope the story is true. Or maybe it was inspired by the movie Tarzan’s New York Adventure!
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International Swimming Hall of Fame
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JJ is originally from the UK and has lived in South Florida since 1994. She is the founder and editor of JAQUO Magazine. You can connect with her using the social media icons below.