“Since I was named after him,” says his nephew, also named Warren H. Toole, “he and I were pretty close.”
The nephew, just 13 at the time of the crash, recalls getting sent to a friend’s house while his parents and other relatives, including the elder Toole’s wife, Mary (a former New York model), waited anxiously for word on what happened to the missing plane.
Hailing from Tampa, Florida, Warren H. Toole was a realtor one of four brothers who co-founded the family firm, W.H. Toole & Sons in 1927. He became the developer of what were then Tampa’s two first two shopping centers, Britton Plaza and North Gate. He was also a member of the Florida Racing Commission.
“It was on the heels of those successes,” says the nephew, “that he was flying to Charlottesville to look at a horse farm. He was tired of running the firm.”