On this day in 1935, hundreds of veterans and civilians in the Florida Keys lost their lives in the Labor Day Hurricane. I learned about it from Ernest Hemingway’s essay, “Who Murdered the Vets,” and the storm and its aftermath figure heavily in my novel, HEMINGWAY’S GIRL. Though the book is historical fiction, the echoes of Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath resounded with me in light of what the WWI Veterans suffered.
It has been 80 years since that devastating storm made landfall. It is the hurricane that led to the creation of the National Weather Service, and the naming and tracking of storms. If you would like to learn more, KeysHistory.org has detailed and graphic pages dedicated to the hurricane.
To honor those who died–those who could have been evacuated had a series of bureaucratic errors and negligences been avoided–I am giving away a signed copy of HEMINGWAY’S GIRL. To win, please comment below about any memorable storms you have lived through, or your favorite Hemingway story, and share on social media. US residents have until 9 PM ET on Thursday, September 3rd to win.