Here is a post that Gary Rumberger put up on the Hawks Nest site earlier today. He hoped to be able to post his photos also, but the internet situation was such that he was not able to post the pictures. He asked if I would help out by posting the photos on the Hawks Nest site, which I have done, and allowed me to post them here as well.

There are quite a few photos below of the exterior of the building and grounds, and several of the manager’s apartment which suffered quite a bit of flood damage, and Unit 301, which also had water damage.

There were many more pictures that what are included here, but these were in my opinion. representative of the entire group.

Here is Gary’s post:

I am sorry it has taken me this long to respond on the condition of the Hawks Nest. I have actually driven out of the keys and that is why I am able to finally post anything. The best estimate we have right now is for anyone having travel plans before February 1, 2018 to change your plans. This date may actually be extended and is not set in stone. I know some people think the damage is not all that significant, but I can tell you it is much different in person. The ability to acquire supplies we need and contractors is extremely difficult. Gary Tucker has been able to secure a roof company that will dry us in for now and come back and complete it later. With the amount of destruction that has occurred in the Keys this is what companies are doing to try to help as many people as possible. The Hawks Nest took a good punch from Irma, but it is still standing and can be fixed. It is just going to take time. No matter what anyone has seen on TV and the internet, it does not prepare for the reality on the ground in Marathon. Things are getting better everyday and the city of Marathon has done a terrific job post Irma. The reality is this no place anybody wants to come visit right now, 30 foot high piles of garbage line the streets and the smell is not pleasant. It will take time for Marathon to come back, but the truth is right now this is not the Keys that you remember. Hopefully in the near future we have phone and internet restored and I will be able to update you more frequently.

Probably the most important picture I have posted here is the 5th one from the top. It doesn’t look like much, but it is the fire pump. This is what supplies the sprinkler system with water in the event of a fire. This particular pump would pull water from the swimming pool to feed the sprinklers. It has been on its last legs for years, and I think that there’s a very good chance that it’s irreparable. The last board had been planning to replace it with a new one that would be fed from the city water main in the street instead of from the pool, and would have an emergency generator in case the power was out at the time of the fire. Either way, there won’t be anybody staying at the Hawks Nest until we have a working fire pump.

P.S. A little good news: The Sunset Grille reopened this weekend.

Oh, wait. Gary R just sent me 12 more pictures. They show some of the progress that has been made so far. It’s looking better already.


  1. Sherry M. Wray

    Thank you to everyone for the pictures, updates and extremely hardwork you are putting in. On one hand it makes me sad to see all of the destruction but on the other hand it gives me hope for the future. God bless you and god speed!

Leave a Reply