Tuesday, May 22, 2018
News Roundup

Banker, civic leader Bronson Thayer dies

THONOTOSASSA — Veteran Florida banker and Tampa civic leader Bronson Thayer died Christmas Eve, family members confirmed late Sunday. He was 77.

Thayer was chairman of Bay Cities Bank and a board member of WEDU, the local public television station. He served on the Florida Council of 100, the boards of the Tampa Museum of Art and the University of South Florida Foundation and was director of the Bok Tower Gardens Foundation.

Along with his wife, Stella Ferguson Thayer, an attorney and co-owner of Tampa Bay Downs, he was named 2014 Citizen of the Year by the Economic Club of Tampa.

They were married 47 years.

Ferguson Thayer said her husband had been battling prostate cancer for three years. He died at around 5 a.m. at Johns Hopkins All Children's Hospital with his wife by his side.

She said Thayer was proud of both his career and his work in the community.

"He had a spark and optimism for life," she said. "He was just special with his love of people."

A Harvard College graduate, he earned an MBA from New York University.

After a spell working in New York, Thayer became a prominent member of Tampa's banking community. He was chairman of the board and CEO of Florida Business Bankgroup Inc., as well as former chief of Tampa's First Florida Banks Inc., and a past chairman of the Florida Chamber of Commerce.

His marriage to Stella Ferguson Thayer made him part of the powerful Lykes family. His heyday was in the 1980s when the Lykes-controlled First Florida Banks enjoyed an economic boom and became a regional heavyweight with 144 offices and about 4,000 employees along Florida's west coast. It was sold to Barnett Banks in 1992

After a hiatus, he returned to banking around 1999, starting Bay Cities Banks. Its stock offering resulted in the sale of $13-million in shares.

He stepped down as chairman after he was diagnosed with prostate cancer, Ferguson Thayer said.

She said her husband was devoted to his friends and family but also loved the outdoors.

A keen hiker, he was proud that he had climbed all 46 peaks in the Adirondacks that have an elevation above 4,000 feet.

"He had an infectious optimism," she said.

Comments
Lightning-Capitals: Washington forces Game 7 with 3-0 victory

Lightning-Capitals: Washington forces Game 7 with 3-0 victory

WASHINGTON — The Lightning let one get away Monday night. And it might cost Tampa Bay a chance at the Stanley Cup.So now there will be a Game 7 to decide the Eastern Conference. Maybe this is how it should be. Maybe this is how it's supposed to...
Updated: 3 hours ago
The weather didn’t get Lightning fans down. Losing Game 6 did.

The weather didn’t get Lightning fans down. Losing Game 6 did.

TAMPA — If the Tampa Bay Lightning can overcome a 2-game deficit to the Washington Capitals and take a 3-2 lead in the Eastern Conference final, then Deborah Schmeltzer can definitely drive across the Howard Frankland Bridge through a driving rainsto...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Lightning journal: Capitals had a shot at Jon Cooper

Lightning journal: Capitals had a shot at Jon Cooper

WASHINGTON — Interesting how things work out in the world of hockey.Back in 2012, the first NHL team to ever interview Jon Cooper for a head coaching job was actually the Washington Capitals. The Caps general manager at the time was George McPh...
Updated: 3 hours ago
History has been kind to Lightning in Game 7s

History has been kind to Lightning in Game 7s

WASHINGTON — There's nothing more delicious in sports than Game 7.Unless your team is playing in it. Then there's nothing more nerve-racking.Most sports fans watch a big game with a nice cold drink. But if your team is playing in a Game 7, the ...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Prepare yourselves: Golden Knights will be talk of the Stanley Cup final

Prepare yourselves: Golden Knights will be talk of the Stanley Cup final

WASHINGTON — It's incredible. Unbelievable, really. Maybe the best sports story in this country and the sport of hockey since 1980's Miracle on Ice.And, as a side note, if the Lightning reaches the Stanley Cup final, everyone in the country out...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s Game 6 shutout loss

Lightning-Capitals: Grading Tampa Bay’s Game 6 shutout loss

Let's do it one more time, shall we?Game 7 it will be.If it matches Game 6, it will be extraordinary.RELATED: More Lightning coverageThe Lightning could not close the door on the Washington Capitals. The Caps, who apparently really don't want to lose...
Updated: 4 hours ago
Lightning-Capitals: Tom Jones’ takeaways from Washington’s Game 6 win

Lightning-Capitals: Tom Jones’ takeaways from Washington’s Game 6 win

Caps D Dmitry Orlov has one of the most wicked slap shots in hockey. When he stepped into one in the first period, Lightning D Ryan McDonagh threw his body in front of it and blocked it with his shoulder — just inches from his face. McDonagh sh...
Updated: 4 hours ago
FPL parent wants to expand its Florida footprint with new purchase

FPL parent wants to expand its Florida footprint with new purchase

TALLAHASSEE — The parent company of Florida utility giant Florida Power & Light announced Monday that it will buy the largest electricity producer in Northwest Florida, Gulf Power, in a $6.4 billion deal.Juno Beach-based NextEra Energy Inc. said in a...
Updated: 5 hours ago
One of Ybor City’s most historic blocks about to see construction of four-story boutique hotel

One of Ybor City’s most historic blocks about to see construction of four-story boutique hotel

TAMPA — Developers are poised to launch construction this week on one of Ybor City’s biggest new projects in years — a four-story, $50 million boutique hotel being created by a Chicago company that seeks out neighborhoods rich in color and character....
Updated: 7 hours ago
State softball: Admiral Farragut happy to be in title game this time around

State softball: Admiral Farragut happy to be in title game this time around

VERO BEACH — All season, Admiral Farragut has focused on two things:Believe in each other.Commit to the process.Well, it all paid off in a big way Monday in the Class 3A state semifinals at Historic Dodgertown in Vero Beach.Alyssa Rano hit a two-run ...
Updated: 7 hours ago