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1. Tom Petty historic marker approved for the Florida rocker's hometown park

Singer/songwriter Tom Petty is getting his place in Florida history.

The Florida Historical Marker Council voted Friday to erect one at a Gainesville city park named after the hall of fame rock and roll star.

The metal plaque with raised letters will tell the story of the iconic rocker's Gainesville's roots. The Grammy award winner played in the neighborhood park as a boy in the 1950s and 60’s before he formed the band Mudcrutch as a teen. 

Related: Late rock legend Tom Petty wowed crowds in 2012 at Germain Arena

The group played throughout North Florida and South Georgia and at University of Florida events before they left town for Los Angeles in 1974.

Petty passed away from a drug overdose in 2017.

2. Three people bitten by sharks in just two days off Florida beach

Authorities said two people were bitten by sharks minutes apart at the same Florida beach Saturday. Another was bitten by a shark Sunday.

Volusia County Beach safety officials told news outlets two bites occurred Saturday afternoon at New Smyrna Beach.

More: Shark expert helps debunk common misconceptions

And: Sharks, alligators, algae and hurricanes: What are the Floridian odds?

Authorities said a 23-year-old woman was bitten on the left hand and wrist, which required her to receive stitches. A short time later, a 21-year-old man was bitten on his right foot and was treated at the scene. Neither bite was life-threatening.

Local news outlets reported a man in his 50s also was bitten Sunday afternoon. A shark bit his right foot, according to the Sun-Sentinel.

The University of Florida’s International Shark Attack file said there have been 17 suspected shark bites involving humans in the state this year.

3. Two Florida panthers found dead after vehicle collisions

An 11-month-old Florida panther was found dead July 26 on State Route 82 near Homestead Road in Lee County.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission also found the remains of a pregnant 5-year-old uncollared female panther July 22 on Golden Gate Boulevard in Collier County, according to a news release. The female was carrying a male and female.

The FWC monitors panther deaths, births and depredations on its Panther Pulse webpage.

So far this year, the FWC recorded 17 panther deaths, 14 of which were killed by vehicles.

A total of 30 deaths were recorded last year, 26 of which were caused by vehicle collisions.

The FWC encourages the public to report sightings of injured or dead panthers so biologists may gain insight into the big cats, the release says.

The wildlife alert hotline can be reached at 1-888-404-3922.

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