Jeff Lytle and Naples Depot

marisa jeff susanJeff Lytle retired and the Naples Press Club hosted a retirement party for him at the Naples Depot Museum. Cleverly titled Just a “Lytle” Celebration, the event drew quite the crowd.

Super thanks to NPC VP Randall Kenneth Jones for organizing such an elaborate summer affair! If he was trying to blow all other summer parties out of the water, he certainly did that.

But for me, it wasn’t about the delicious wine or the yummy dsimonesserts. I didn’t eat one piece of cheese or nibble on any of the other hors d’oeuvres. For me, it was the springboard to examining my own life’s journey. Assessing my own career path and my own contribution to sucking up the Earth’s resources was a defining moment in the evening for me.

simon normanWhen you find that job that causes you to be excited every day – forget about the pay – with people you love, doing what you love, it doesn’t get any better than that.” – Warren Buffet

manny marisaIt was amazing… Listening to people discuss Jeff’s career in length, in depth, and in person. Hearing how one man played a part in other people’s opinions, ideas, and actions. He’s written approximately 9,000 editorials, and he’s hosted the Naples Daily NewsMakers – a weekly television show – since 1990.

IMG_3982No one ever finds life worth living. One has to make it worth living.” – Winston Churchill

This retirement party was the wake-up call I needed. I’m not even sure why. I don’t even know exactly when during the event my thinking changed. But, as different people approached me, I came to the realization that I’m the deciding factor in my own life. I’ve been struggling with issues and matters that seem trivial in the larger scale of living.

kathleen passidomoI didn’t know how to forget the minutiae. I still don’t. What can I say? I’m detail-oriented. But as a pretty private person, I’ve remained silent in my personal battles, and once a year or so I’ll blurt something that completely takes others by surprise. But since Jeff’s retirement celebration, I’ve made an effort to wake up each morning thankful that I have another day to “get it right.” To get something done. To think. To do. To create. To be.

One can only marvel at the distinctiveness of human physiology. It’s one of a kind. Never again will there be another organization of particles such as your present one. Never again shall you possess the same essence as your current one.” – Simon Cleveland

jeff lytleRandy named it appropriately by calling it a celebration. I haven’t been to many retirement parties, but this one certainly celebrated Jeff’s life after 35 years at the Naples Daily News.

So thanks, Randy, for the great party!

But even more thanks to Jeff for living the kind of life worth celebrating!

marisa simon



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