Air Conditioning & Heating, Inc. and the Emerald Coast of Destin, Florida have been intertwined since Kevin Leonard Casey, Owner and President, established the company in 1983. Destin, Florida was founded by his mother’s (Josephine Destin Casey) great grandfather, Leonard Destin, in 1835.
The adventure began earlier when Leonard Destin, his father (George Destin), and his brother set out from New London, Connecticut with their ships and ran into a hurricane near Cape Canaveral, Florida. Two of the ships (carrying Leonard, his father and brother) were lost at sea. Stories had long circulated in the port of New London about the excellent fishing to be found off the Florida coasts. Leonard Destin decided to continue on and look for the best fishing he could find, as well as a place to settle down.
In 1845, Leonard Destin (who was a doctor as well as a fisherman) met and married Martha McCullom from South Carolina and built a lovely home for a growing family. As a northerner, Leonard was suspected of being a spy and was imprisoned near Freeport, Florida during the Civil War. Scheduled to be hung, the circuit judge decided to spare Leonard’s life because he was a fellow Mason. Following the war, Leonard returned to the area and lived here with his family, consisting of 4 sons and 3 daughters, until his death in 1884.
By the late 1870’s Leonard had built a thriving commercial fishing enterprise and employed many people in the area which was then called East Pass. In 1879, Leonard hired a 13 year old boy named William Marler who proved to be dependable and hard working. In a few short years Leonard gave William command of his own ship. Over the years, Captain “Billy” sailed the mail in and out of East Pass and, to make things easier for locals, created an informal post office. In 1904, Captain Billy was formally made postmaster. An inquiry from Washington requested the name of the official new post office and Captain Billy responded with “Destin” in honor of his first employer.
Destin remained undiscovered and was considered an island unto itself until the mid-1930’s when the Marler Bridge was built and settlers began trickling into the Emerald Coast. In the 1940’s and 50’s most of the growth came from an influx of military retirees who became familiar with the appeal of Destin’s white sand beaches and cool sea breezes while stationed in the area. Condominium developers in the 70’s and 80’s provided the next growth spurt with Destin becoming officially incorporated in 1985.
During the post World War II era, Buck Destin (great grandson of Leonard Destin) continued building the family commercial fishing enterprise. Buck’s only son, Dewey Destin, began working on the boats and in the processing plants at an early age.
At the age of 15, in 1977, Kevin Casey began working in the family business. At the age of 18, he was promoted to first mate on the Gulf Queen with his cousin Dewey Destin. An honest living of hard work and long hours were life lessons to Kevin that cannot be described. These teachings gave him what he needed to implement the tradition of his own company. It is to this day, all about the customer’s experience, as well as delivering the best product and services every day. He has made a dedication to pass this tradition on at Air Conditioning & Heating, Inc. He is proud of all his employees and would not trade one of them for any one.
We are a very close family at this company and very highly skilled in our industry. Check us out for yourself, and you will discover why we have customers who have been with us for 28 plus years. We service all makes and manufacturers (Diakin, Carrier, Trane, Rheem, Tempstar, Goodman, Kelvinator, Bryant, Heil, Lennox, Ruud, Amana, American Standard, Nutone, Westinghouse, Broan, Gibson, Maytag, Frigidaire, Tappan, Comfortmaker, and geothermals: Addison, Geocomfort, Coldflo, Climate Masters, Mitsubishi, Water Furnace, Florida Heat Pump and others).