The First Mayor of the “Old” Panama City Beach Has Died

Claudia Pledger, the matriarch of the Pledger family, died Thursday morning at her home. She was 105 years old.

Mrs. Pledger was the first mayor of Panama City Beach when it incorporated the area along the west end of Thomas Drive and Beach Blvd.

Her father was Gibb Thomas, the man after whom Thomas Drive was named years ago when it was nothing but sand dunes.

Funeral services are incomplete Thursday evening and will be announced later by Southerland Funeral Home.


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