Orlando Sentinel, Bobby Coker, file
May 20, 2004
Jack Eckerd, who built a drugstore empire from three run-down Tampa-area stores and became one of Florida's best known philanthropists, died on Wednesday, May 19, 2004, in Clearwater. He was 91. In addition to his business acumen and gift giving, Eckerd was known for his political ambitions. He ran for governor in 1970 and 1978 and the U.S. Senate in 1974. The millionaire businessman lost all three bids. Here, he is shown with then Public Service Commissioner Paula Hawkins, a former rival for a U.S. Senate seat, after they were selected the Republican Party's candidiates in the 1978 governor's race against Bob Graham. The Eckerd-Hawkins ticket lost.