Lt. Gilmore Memorial
|12549 State Park Drive |
|Clermont, Florida ||34711|
This site is located in the Central region of the state.
Lake Louisa State Park is located west of US 27 approximately seven miles south of Clermont, Florida. Enter the park using the main road from US 27 and continue slightly less than one mile to the Lake Louisa access road on the right. Park in the designated parking lot at the lake and follow the boardwalk to the beachfront area to view the memorial.
Dedicated Veteran’s Day 2001, this six-foot granite monument serves to honor Army Air Force Lt. Dean R. Gilmore and “…thousands of other military aviators trained throughout Florida during World War II.”
A veteran of twenty-nine combat missions over Africa and Italy as a member of the 111th Reconnaissance Squadron, Lt. Gilmore received the Distinguished Flying Cross for his actions. Flying out of Bartow Army Air Field, Gilmore crashed in Lake Louisa on his twenty-third birthday in November 1944. Serving as a flight instructor, Lt. Gilmore died while leading a flight of five P-51 Mustangs in training activities.
Although Gilmore’s body was recovered at the time of the accident, much of the airplane wreckage was not cleared until discovered in June 2001. This event then served as a catalyst to Lake County Sheriff George E. Krupp, Jr. to memorialize these brave airmen.
While travelling the boardwalk from the parking lot to the monument on the lakeshore, visitors can learn about Lt. Gilmore from the interpretative display located along the walk.
Lake Louisa State Park