Page 1 Page 2 Page 3 Page 4 Page 5 Page 6 Page 7 Page 8 Page 9 Page 10 Page 11 Page 12 Page 13 Page 14 Page 15 Page 16 Page 17 Page 18 Page 19 Page 20 Page 21 Page 22 Page 23 Page 24 Page 25 Page 26 Page 27 Page 28 Page 29 Page 30 Page 31 Page 32 Page 33 Page 34 Page 35 Page 36 Page 37 Page 38 Page 39 Page 40 Page 41 Page 42 Page 43 Page 44 Page 45 Page 46 Page 47 Page 48 Page 49 Page 50 Page 51 Page 5219 Ironically, the Tube Dudes were a product of one of Gerber’s darkest periods. The native Floridian captained ships around the world, once going six months without setting foot on land. He later served as a bodyguard before settling down with a family and seemingly finding his calling as a yacht builder. The success of his first company, Pred- ator, was recognized when he and his partner sold the business. That allowed Gerber to found Legend Custom Yachts – a $5 million, 60-employee business – on his own. It seemed Gerber captured lightning in a bottle once again as his yacht designs caught the fancy of the wealthy and beyond. As it did for business owners across the world, the Great Recession of 2008 would change things rapidly. “In one week I had four different attorneys call me to say that my customers had filed bankruptcy and they weren’t going to be able to pay their bill. That’s how the yacht builders got shut down,” Gerber said. With unpaid and unfinished yachts in inventory, Legend was forced to close its doors and sent Gerber to the unemployment line. “I knew I was going to have one heck of a hon- ey-do list because I didn’t have a job any more,” he said. “I lived in a beautiful house on the water overlooking Sarasota Bay and had three docks so if I was going to be doing all this yard work I was going to need something to hold the fishing pole. I thought why not make a per- son-looking thing, never thinking that I would build a second one.” That inspiration struck on July 1, 2010. Three days later, the Gerbers hosted an Independence Day party for 300 friends and neighbors. They quickly realized that their new house guest was being noticed. “During the course of the party, I’ll bet 30 peo- ple came to me and said, ‘Hey Scott, who’s the dude sitting out on your dock?’ One of my neighbors who is married to a doctor was at the party. Her husband buys her everything she could possibly want. Well, she “That’s the thing about the Tube Dude. It doesn’t matter what language you speak or how old you are. The simplicity is the magic.” – Scott Gerber Tube Dude creator Scott Gerber poses with Giant Dude, who now waves and smile at cars passing Greer City Hall.