Leonard Skinner

Jon M. Fletcher/The Times-Union from Jacksonville.com

Leonard Skinner, the man who inspired the name of the rock band [lastfm]Lynyrd Skynyrd[/lastfm], has passed away at age 77.

CBS News reports that the former highschool basketball coach and gym teacher passed away in his sleep early Monday morning. He had Alzheimer’s disease.

As the story goes band members were inspired to name the band Lynyrd Skynyrd after Skinner sent a group of male students to the Robert E. Lee High School principal because their hair didn’t abide by the dress code.

To be a good sport Skinner allowed the band to use a photo of his Leonard Skinner Realty sign inside their third album.

Skinner reportedly always felt a little bad about the situation.  He once told the Florida Times Union “It was against the school rules. I don’t particularly like long hair on men, but again, it wasn’t my rule.”

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