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Who is the Murray Horowitz whose Plaque is on a Bench at the Palm Beach Inlet?

Murray Horowitze memorial at Palm Beach InletIt’s funny how often we look at things without seeing them.

I’ve been riding the Lake Trail in Palm Beach since the 1970s and have stopped at the Palm Beach Inlet on the north end of the island scores of times.

Who was Murray Horowitz?

Several years ago, a park bench with a memorial plaque on it was installed at the Inlet park.

I’ve rested on that bench many times, but never knew the man nor anything about the quote on the sign, “Love others and appreciate what you have.”

Google wasn’t much help

Google didn’t give me the definitive answer, so I turned to former colleague and Palm Beach Daily News Publisher Joyce Reingold.

She quickly sent me a copy of a news story that had run in the island’s newspaper, The Shiny Sheet (called that because it’s printed on a paper stock that keeps the ink from rubbing off on rich fingers, at least the few that are left after Bernie Madoff slashed and burned trust funds). The story said that Kenneth Horowitz had just donated money for a water fountain for people and dogs, the second one he had funded in memory of his father.

Plaque location

Key parts of the Horowitz clip

The feature [a water fountain which also provides dogs with a drink] is a sort of chaser to the Murray Horowitz Memorial water fountain installed nearby a few years ago. The idea was for those who run, jog or walk to take a breather. Now, their dogs can, too.

Both were made possible by Palm Beacher Kenneth Horowitz, who said the fountain’s inspiration was his father. Murray Horowitz died when Ken was 21. A never-forgotten kernel of his dad’s wisdom appears on a plaque at the fountain and has drawn numerous comments from passersby: “Love others, and appreciate what you have.”

That’s what my dad always said

“That’s what my dad always said. I learned that from him,” said Horowitz, a year-round resident and avid runner now in his mid-50s. One of the founders of Cellular One, he formerly co-owned the Miami Fusion franchise of Major League Soccer.

Ken Horowitz also used to own The Vicarage on North Lake Way, the island’s first historic home to be landmarked.  In addition to his wife and children, he has an 8-year-old 18-pound amaretto poodle, born on Halloween, named Boo.

One bottle’s not enough

“We live here year round, and I’m a runner. When you run in the summer, one bottle of water isn’t sufficient to keep you hydrated. There was a water fountain at the inlet, but none at the park,” and nothing in the budget, he said.

About three years ago, he asked the town to accept a donation for a fountain to be built. It required a resolution, because the installation called for a power hook-up so the water would be refrigerated, Horowitz said.

“I also run with my dog, Boo. So once again, the town agreed for me to donate additional money. The doggie bar was installed last week with tile around it,” said Horowitz, estimating the cost for both watering facilities was about $22,000, including upkeep. “The town wanted additional funds for perpetual maintenance on it. So there is money in a fund to pay for future repairs.”

smurphy@pbdailynews.com

murray-horowitz-memorial-bench-at-palm-beach-inletFunny you should mention the fountain

When I run into new folks at the inlet, I usually strike up a conversation and casually say, “You can tell you’re in Palm Beach when even the outdoor water fountains are refrigerated.”

If that seems to elicit a response, I step closer and whisper in a confidential tone, “But if you have a Palm Beach resident ID card and wave it in just the right spot, the fountain dispenses Evian water.”

You’d be amazed at how many people say, “REALLY?”

I like think Murray Horowitz is smiling when that happens.

7 comments to Who is the Murray Horowitz whose Plaque is on a Bench at the Palm Beach Inlet?

  • Lurch1

    I use that bench and the water fountain regularly, but never paid attention to the plaque, thinking it was about some rich guy with a few extra bucks to donate.

    I wish there were a marker explaining the history of that dock. Years ago before a hurricane nailed it, there was a little house and I think bait shop there and everyone called it Annie’s Dock. Who was Annie? When and how was that spot first used as a dock? Old Indian site, first commerical dock on Palm Beach? Who knows?

  • kls

    Lurch,

    I had the pleasure of meeting Annie, also known as Palm Beach Docks Annie, when I first started riding to the inlet.

    In her day, she was the dockmaster and served as the pickup point for the mail boats. I think you might be right that she also sold bait.

    She was a friendly lady who welcomed visitors.

    When I get around to cataloging my photos, I’m sure I’ll run across some pictures of her and her cottage.

  • Charles Keefer

    Dang you. I was going to do a feature on that.

    You did a better job than I could have. I wouldn’t have thought of calling Joyce.

    If I can figure out how to do it, I’ll give you a reefer in my blog.

    Next time, I’ll remember to call Joyce.

    My hat is off to you.

    cmk

  • Charles Keefer

    By the way, did you ever post the last penny in Palm Beach?

  • kls

    Thanks for the compliment. I’m glad I beat you to it.

    Chuck is a former coworker and bike collector who has a couple of bike blogs. He’s been moving them around lately, but try http://charleskeefer.wordpress.com/

    And, yes, Chuck, I did write about the penny:

    http://www.palmbeachbiketours.com/2009/01/17/the-one-palm-beach-penny-madoff-didnt-steal/

    As far as calling Joyce, remember you don’t have to KNOW everything, you just have to know where to FIND everything.

  • Barbara Kittay

    Murray Horowitz was a wonderful, wonderful man, who, when I was a little girl, was struck by lightening and survived. He lived about a dozen years more and died of leukemia. His wife adored him and, to my knowledge, never remarried, believing always that he was the love of her life. His two children would have made him very, very proud. I miss him. He was my father’s friend; his wife was my mother’s friend; his son was my brother’s best friend; and his daughter was mine. He was a quiet, thoughtful man with a wonderful smile.

  • Barbara,

    Thanks for filling us in on Mr. Horowitz. It’s amazing how many things are named after or dedicated to folks who have just become a name on a plaque to the rest of us after a few years go by.

    It’s nice to know the human side.