Protecting What's Ours

David Hearndon keeps a small herd of heifers and calves on 50 acres, and leases stalls to horse owners who share the land that he and his family have enjoyed for over 50 years. During the early 2000's, Hearndon was offered $12 million to sell his land for residential development and he agreed to sell it, but the housing bubble burst before the deal could be consummated. Now, though he still owns the land, Hearndon carries the weight of his decision to sell the place where he grew up and raised his sons.

See how the disappearance of agricultural land in Florida has affected the state.

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Protecting What's Ours
During the housing boom in 2003, David Hearndon sold his family farm for $12 million. The housing bubble burst and the contract was never fulfilled. He kept the land but memory of the decision haunts him still.
To Keep Our Homes
Three generations of the Lee family come together to save their family homes from foreclosure.
A Place of Our Own
With its quiet, family-friendly lifestyle, Wilton Manor attracts the nation's second-largest population of gay couples seeking an alternative to the party lifestyle of Miami and Ft. Lauderdale Beach.
Nixia's Journey
From El Salvador to migrant worker to agribusiness co-owner, Nixia Sagastume's journey is one more Hispanic/Latino farm workers are making.
Constructing a Comeback
Clare Whelan refuses to give up hope amidst a struggling construction industry. Her company, Doors Inc., continues to persevere in South Florida.
Just a Grandparent
Paulette Richards has lived with her two granddaughters since they were born. Despite life's ups and downs, she has managed to keep them out of the cracks. But for how long?
Open Door Health Center
The Open Door Health Center serves the uninsured of Homestead, a largely agricultural community in South Florida.
Health Care Lost
Bob Brennan owned his own tree-trimming service but lost his health care coverage when premiums became too high, forcing him to find employment that offered health insurance for himself and his family.
Fighting for Life
Denis Mitchel Pinto quit his job four years ago as a geography teacher in Brazil in order to come to Miami and become a Mixed Martial Arts champion. Today he is one.
Home Alone
"Florida has more vacant houses than any state in the country, about one out of every six houses, according to the 2010 U.S. Census." St. Petersburg Times, 3/22/2011.
Young Hood Graduates
"My parents never graduated from high school. I want to go to college and be somebody nobody thought I would be." Eleventh grader Eliezer and 10th grader Tiara live in the inner city, and dream big after they graduate from high school.
Learning More
After mastering classical dance in India, Swapna Komarraju married and moved to Tampa, FL and opened the Srishti Dance Academy, where American students study unique choreographies made rich by a global knowledge of dance.
Coming Clean
Florida has long been the nation's capital for prescription painkiller abuse. Now clean for over a year, Adam Waszak's relationship with oxycodone began with the death of his brother.
A Mother's Promise
Ann Marie Nicholas is a single mom working two jobs to support her family.
Recipe for Success
Felicia Hatcher's sweet dreams turned into reality when she started an ice cream truck company, bringing unusual flavors to appreciative Miami fans.
Waiting to Live
Florida has begun cuts to the AIDS Drug Assistance Program (ADAP) that have left many Floridians on a waiting list to receive funding for life-saving medications.
Hurting for Health Care
Registered nurse Alma Knight takes her medical knowledge on the road to serve South Florida's uninsured population in Pinky the Health Mobile.
Punishable by Death
Florida leads the nation in wrongful death row convictions. One of those was the conviction of Dave Keaton, the first person in the U.S. to be exonerated after the death penalty was reinstated in 1976. Keaton describes what it's like to be innocent and condemned to death.
Visualizing Florida puts a human face on statistical data. Our stories are based on trends and numbers that decision makers use to analyze Florida's changing demographics, but through visualizing and personalizing this numerical information, we introduce you to the residents behind the numbers and help you interpret what the data actually means.