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Cervantes Street Bridge Gets New Name to Honor Lifelong Pensacolian

Pensacola News Journal - June 19, 2012

A bridge is a structure that brings people together.


The same quality is found in leaders who love and serve their community.


On Tuesday afternoon, the Cervantes Street bridge was renamed the Joyce Webb Nobles Bridge in honor of a woman known for her lifelong dedication to the city.


The 87-year-old Nobles said she didn’t know the bridge was going to be dedicated to her, so the ceremony came as a surprise.


“It is truly an honor and privilege to be here today,” she said. “God’s been good to me.”


Nobles has lived in Pensacola her entire life. She served as president of Pensacola Savings and Loan and is well-known for her volunteer spirit.


Tuesday’s ceremony probably elicited a touch of deja vu for Nobles.


As a child, in 1935, she was selected to cut the ribbon when the first Cervantes overpass was opened. She cut the ribbon again in 2005 when the old wooden bridge was replaced by the modern concrete overpass.


Nobles’ son Bill said he felt his mother should be honored, so he mentioned dedicating the bridge to her to state Rep. Clay Ford, R-Pensacola. Florida lawmakers approved renaming the bridge during the past session. Nobles’ son Jack is a former Pensacola City Council member, and her daughter, Linda, is a circuit judge in Pensacola.


“Not a lot of people have dedicated a bridge twice,” Bill Nobles said. “I am so happy she is around to see it.”


State Sen. Greg Evers, R-Baker, who was at Tuesday’s ceremony, said he thought dedicating the bridge to Nobles was a terrific idea.


“When you pass a bill like that, you have to get the background,” he said. “And when I read the background and realized what this lady meant to the community, I felt it was more than fitting to assist in the passage of the bill. I felt this honor was way overdue.”


About 30 people came to show their support and to honor Nobles at the ceremony.


Nobles said she didn’t see what she had done for Pensacola as a big deal but graciously accepted the bridge dedication.


“I’ve done the things I’ve done because I love Pensacola,” she said.


Two brown and yellow signs bearing her name were placed on either side of the bridge.

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