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Monroe County Commissioner Mike Forster, Former Islamorada Mayor, Dies From COVID

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In the weeks after officials in the Florida Keys shut the island down chain because of the then-new COVID-19 pandemic, Mike Forster began mobilizing to feed those he knew would be among the most in need. Restaurant workers. Starting with organizing a shipment of 10,000 pounds of meat from frozen food giant Cargill Protein for Keys food banks in April 2020, Forster then began offering free meals to servers, bartenders, cooks, bussers and other Keys wait staff out of his popular Islamorada eatery, Mangrove Mikes.

“Unfortunately, I think we’ll have a very good turnout,” Forster said just days before he was set to launch the service.

That effort led to a larger endeavor of creating a nonprofit to feed those in need up and down the 120-mile archipelago, which was starved of tourism, its number-one industry.

Early Monday morning, Forster, 61, succumbed from pneumonia caused by COVID-19, his friend Tony Hammon said.

Read more at our news partner the Miami Herald.