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Siblings Tucker Gibbs, Denny Gibbs and Emilie Gibbs tell stories from their “free-range” childhood growing up in Coconut Grove, Florida, and how it shaped their lives and values. They reminisce about their pet monkey, Pansy, and their family’s political involvements, including 15-year-old Tucker’s solo trip to Washington, D.C., in 1969 to attend the March Against Death, part of The Moratorium to End the War in Vietnam. And, years later, how after their father died, they sneaked into a closed cemetery to bury his ashes.
This story was recorded at the StoryCorps Mobile Booth in Orlando in 2019. It was produced locally by Juan Gualda at WMFE. Find more stories at wmfe.org or on the StoryCorps: Orlando podcast.
Support for StoryCorps: Orlando comes from Orlando Health and our members (become a member). StoryCorps: Orlando’s theme music is from “See You Letter” by Jordan Foley, a singer-songwriter based in Orlando.
Denny Gibbs with their pet monkey, Pansy, in the 1970s
Parents Emilie M. Gibbs and William W. Gibbs in the late ’50s-early ’60s on Grandfather Mountain in North Carolina.
The Gibbs family, Christmas of 2010. Front row: (from left) Tucker Gibbs, Mary Ann Gibbs (Tucker’s wife), Rebecca Gibbs (sister), Jay MacPhee (Denny’s husband), Denny (crouching/cold), Emilie Gibbs
Back row: Anne Mulder (wife of Rebecca), Priscilla Gibbs (daughter of Tucker), Nora Gibbs Merrill (sister), Tom Merrill (Nora’s husband). Not pictured: sister Robbie Gibbs Miller and her husband Randy, and sister Merrill Gibbs Tighlman