In 1914 when Gwynne High opened, purple and white were selected as the school colors. A few years later green was selected. Then in 1919 red and white was chosen because that was the only color of basketball uniforms available. Students were not happy with this merry-go-round of colors, nor the colors themselves. They felt their school needed a permanent color to promote better school spirit. On October 12,1920, the students adopted by unanimous vote for the colors of green and white for their school colors.
There are two arguable and acceptable accounts of how the nickname "Green Wave" came about. The first is rather simple. With the school color being Green and the schools close proximity to the Caloosahatchee River and Gulf of Mexico which at times appears to have a green tint, it was a natural fit. The name was simply a logical geographically based nickname.
Other claim it began in November of 1921 on a trip to play St. Petersburg. On the ferry ride across Tampa Bay many players got seasick. Someone noted that they looked like a "Green Wave" coming off the boat. The boys played a tough first half but due to sickness ending up losing 6-0.
From 1920 to 1926, Fort Myers was referred to only as the Greenies or Green and White. On Saturday October 8, 1927 an article in the Tropical News describing the Lakeland contest made the first reference ever to Fort Myers High as being the "Green Wave". This was also about the time that Dr. Fred Bartleson and Dr. Baker Whisnant encouraged the use of the nickname "Green Wave" as both had ties to the Tulane University Green Wave.