FORT MYERS, Fla. -- One by one, friends, family, Police Chiefs, and people who knew Veronica Shoemaker took their seat at her funeral. The service attended by so many is a testament to her presence visible throughout the community.
"She has been such a an icon in our community. She has been such a Civil Rights trailblazer for us and we're just grateful that everyone took time out of their busy schedules to come here and just pay tribute to her," said her friend Erma Boyd-Dorsey.
A tribute to a woman who wore many hats. Her list of accomplishments is lengthy enough for Senator Lizbeth Benacquisto to proclaim Saturday Veronica Shoemaker Day.
Dr. Shoemaker led as president of the NAACP chapter in Fort Myers, established a home for abused children, assisted the needy and senior citizens. Born and raised in Dunbar, Shoemaker might be most well known for dedicating her life to improving Dunbar during her 26 years as Councilman. "She was just an honor to serve beside, what an inspiration she was. She never took no for an answer, she made things happen and she was a role model for everybody in public service," said Lee County Commissioner Frank Mann.
Pastor James Givens served as the funeral's preacher and as Veronicas pastor for the last five years of her life. "She exhibited nothing but Christ like concern for all of Gods people regardless of race, regardless of creed. She always looked out for everybody and she always had an encouraging word for everyone."
A woman those closest to describe as motherly, will continue to watch over the city with all she's left behind. "We can look around and see the things that she has accomplished and we owe it to ourselves to pass down this information to our younger generations," said her friend Rose Eadygoven.