Carl Sheffield Forrester, Jr.

Carl Sheffield Forrester, (aka) Captain Carl, (aka) Canary of Point Washington, Fla., 67, began his final journey at first light on Aug. 17, 2013. He passed over the river peacefully at home with his wife, Alice, beside him.

Carl was born on Nov. 25, 1945, in Birmingham, Ala., to Carl Sheffield Forrester and Ruth Park Forrester. He graduated from West End High School in Birmingham and graduated from Auburn University with a degree in Business and Aviation Management.

Carl has lived in Point Washington since 1985 and is survived by his wife of 47 years, Alice J. McReynolds Forrester; daughter, Dara Smith of Santa Rosa Beach; grandchildren, Keslee L. Richard and her husband Seth of Kaplan, La., Forrest T. Smith of Santa Rosa Beach; Saylor Mae Smith of Panama City Beach; great-grandchildren, Layden Jude and Jensen Rivers Richard, of Kaplan, La.

Carl is also survived by his sister, Roberta Forrester Carmichael and husband Harold, of New Braunfels, Texas; nieces, Jill Carmichael Lutz of Texas and Suzan Carmichael and husband David Allen of California; grandniece, Eliza Anne Lutz; grandnephews, James Forrester Lutz, Isaac James Allen and Asher Carmichael Allen; and many more cousins, aunts and uncles.

Carl was a man of many careers. His first love was flying airplanes. He was a flight instructor and a private corporate pilot for Vulcan Materials in Birmingham.  Other career paths took him into insurance and estate planning with New York Life, and Regional Manager of Sepco which transported him and his family to the Chicago area. 

In 1984, tired of the fast city life and wanting to get back to his Southern ways of life, he took his family to Seagrove Beach to begin his life as “Capt. Carl.” He started the first “river tours” on the Choctawhatchee River as the “Marsh Hen River Tours.” He loved to tell about the fauna and flora of the area as well the historical stories of the river and Point Washington, which he prided himself on learning it all. This inspired him to take his boat, the “Alice Jane,” on a long adventure from Pt. Washington to Cuba, Mexico, Belize and the Bay Islands of Honduras. He was a true mariner.

He loved working with children and judging science fairs and giving talks on career day in the high schools. Carl loved the adventures of life and always wanted to learn something new. He had a story for just about everything, and always wanted to share it. Carl loved the words from the poem “Invictus — I am the master of my fate and I am Captain of my Soul.” He truly lived by these words. 

He will be greatly missed in this community by the people who knew him. As best stated by his granddaughter Keslee, “The Great Captain Carl has passed.  He was one of a kind and such a character; he knew how to tell stories and was great at it.” 

Farewell. Safe voyage and save us all a seat.

A celebration of his life will be planned at a later date.