By Cindy Jo Ayers
In January 1977, Larry Merritt went to work for Florida Farm Bureau in Sumter County. He grew up in Bushnell, Florida and attended Florida State University where he earned a business degree before becoming a Farm Bureau Agent.
Merritt and his wife of 36 years Barbara, along with children Scott and Jennifer, moved up to Gilchrist County in September of 1981. This was the beginning of Merritt’s long association with the Farm Bureau members of Gilchrist County. He said on Monday, “I really appreciate the people of Gilchrist County and how they accepted our family when we moved here.” Merritt went on to say the best thing about the job is the people he works with in the office and the members of the board as well as the Farm Bureau members he has come to know over his long career here at the Trenton office.
Merritt’s mother, Mary Merritt moved up to Gilchrist County back in 1989 from Center Hill, so she could live near her son and his family.
Future plans for Merritt will include fishing, camping and a list of projects that his family has been working on. He also plans to spend a lot of time watching ball games as four of his five grandchildren are very involved with sports at Trenton High School.
He plans to officially retire at the end of December. He said, “I feel that I have been abundantly blessed to have worked and lived in Gilchrist County, it is our home.”
The staff at the Gilchrist County Farm Bureau office is hosting a reception in Larry Merritt’s honor on Monday, December 18 from 1:30 to 3:30 in the afternoon. The public is invited to attend this reception.