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Senator Bob Johnson remembered for his love of Myakka State Park

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MYAKKA, Fla. -- The land is some of the most peaceful on the Suncoast -- place where you can relax and listen to the sounds of nature, Myakka State Park.

"It's one of the few places left in Florida, as most state parks are, that you can come out and visit the real Florida," says Park Supervisor Teresa Good.

This park may not have stayed in it's natural state without Senator Bob Johnson. In 1975, while working in Florida government, Johnson helped get the Myakka River designated as wild and scenic.

"He was a man who meant what he said and said what he meant," says County Commissioner Carolyn Mason. "He was really no nonsense but he had a big heart."

For years Senator Johnson served on the Friends of Myakka Board. Teresa Good with the Myakka Park said he played a large role in keeping Myakka a peaceful place to escape.

"With so many subdivisions being put in and so much habitat loss I believe Myakka is just a place you can come out and not have to see the everyday city or urban things they normally see," said Good.

Last year -- for his contributions to the environment, Sarasota County named a park after him, Senator Bob Johnson Landing.

"When you see the site, you see the connection," said Commissioner Mason.

At the parks dedication Senator Johnson told us what having a park named after him meant.

"Well it's really a continuation of the legacy of preserving the Myakka River which is highly important to the people of this area," said Senator Johnson.

Sarasota County Commissioner Carolyn Mason served on a County Board with Senator Johnson and knew him well.

"I'm really going to miss him. I typically sat next to him or a seat between us at the FAIR Board meetings. I'm really going to miss his expertise and council," said Commissioner Mason.

Myakka River State Park where Senator Johnson dedicated so much of his time is open seven days a week for all to come out and enjoy nature.