Behind every good organization is a group of dedicated volunteers who put in countless hours.

While this might not be true for all organizations or entities, it is for the non-profit entity called the Destin History and Fishing Museum.

“The volunteers are the heart of the museum,” said museum Executive Director Kathy Marler Blue to more than 15 volunteers gathered for a recognition luncheon at Dewey Destin’s Harborside Restaurant Thursday. “Without these very important people the museum staff and board realize it would be a very difficult task to meet the goals that have been set.

“Your free time, talents and special interests are welcome and very much appreciated,” Blue added.

After being treated to lunch by Dewey Destin, Blue recognized the volunteers giving each a certificate, a box of treats and a copy of Hank Klein’s book “Destin’s Founding Father, The Untold Story of Leonard Destin.”

Volunteers were recognized for their number of hours of service. For those serving more than 100 hours, they received certificates for reaching the Bronze level. Silver level certificates were handed out to those with more than 250 hours and Gold for those who have given more than 500 hours of service.

Parker Destin, Ron Johnston and Claude Newland reached Bronze level.

Those at Silver and working toward Gold were Rick Derek, Norm Hall, Tina Harbuck, Terri Hensley, Lloyd Taylor and Russell Wamble.

New Silver recipients were Janie Browning and Matt Ronk.

Terry Long, Tona Newland and Don Rogers each have reached gold level and are working toward Diamond.

Diamond Level 1 is for volunteering 1,000 hours or more. Level 2 is for 2,000 hours and Level 3 for 3,000 hours or more.

John Lefler, the board’s treasurer, has reached Level 1.

Two volunteers who have reached Diamond Level 3 are Carole Marler with 3,829 hours and Dave Fraser, 3,483 hours.

“The words ‘thanks’ and ‘you are appreciated’ just don’t seem enough, but know that your support for the museum is very much appreciated,” Blue said.