Fought in Seminole Wars as 1st Sergeant of Company B, 4th U. Owned the Oak Hill plantation that later became Parrish.
A map of Manatee County from 1888 In the 1950s, everyone in the Parrish community knew Gettis Lee.
The owner of a general store in Parrish and some citrus property, Gettis Lee was 63 when he was murdered Lee's neighbors knew him as a man of habit.
They joked that they could set their clock by the rumble of his truck as he left home at 6 a.m. But on Friday, March 8, 1957, Lee never arrived at the store.
Almost as soon as Merrill Lee's body was found, locals began speculating about who was behind the murders.