Surrounded by those who loved him, Donald Philip Lichter passed in his home, in Siesta Key, Florida, Sept. 8, 2018.
Donald Philip Lichter
Surrounded by those who loved him, Donald Philip Lichter passed in his home, in Siesta Key, Florida, Sept. 8, 2018. Don was well known on Siesta Key and around town as the handsome white bearded man always in the company of his loyal service dog, a golden retriever named Jocey.
Don was born February 18, 1934, in Brooklyn, New York. He was the third of four children born to Jeanne and Harry Lichter. From a very young age Don had a strong sense of family responsibility and took on the role of guardian and protector of his younger brother Eddie, who suffered from Cerebral Palsy. After Don’s parents and siblings passed, he lovingly and selflessly continued to care for his brother throughout Eddie’s life.
His seven children from his large, blended family were always the pride and joy of his life. Nina Carlin, Douglas Lichter (Paula), Darcy Lichter, Stacey Tzur (Oded Tzur z”l)), Kim Gardner (Barry), Harry Lichter (Melissa), Ben Lichter (Ashley), his 11 grandchildren and 3 great grandchildren were cherished by him and were raised in the spirit of unconditional love, support, and pride. Lucky in love, Don met his late in life companion, Cheryl Merrifield 16 years ago and ever since they have been a dedicated and devoted couple whose family, children and grandchildren were embraced and loved by both. Don will be profoundly missed by so many. “Don’s greatest love in life was his children.”
Don was a people person and people loved to be with Don. At the age of nineteen, he left Brooklyn to pursue a career in Latin dancing. He was a dancer at the famous Tropicana Club in Cuba. His passion for dance and music remained an intricate part of his life and his love for music translated into promoting major rock concerts at Tampa Stadium and in the Bay area throughout the 1970’s.
“Don’s greatest love in life was his children.”
He began his professional career in real estate on Long Island, New York. In 1971, Don moved his family to Clearwater, Florida, and found great success developing properties in the Clearwater, St.Petersburg, and Sarasota areas. Beyond his professional accomplishments, Don was a voracious reader, reading a few books a week. He had a great thirst for knowledge, and penchant for history.
The Gulf of Mexico was his lifeblood. If he wasn’t riding his bike alongside it, play- ing Kadima next to it, or sailing a Hobie Cat over it, he was in it. He enjoyed countless hours kayaking with his loyal companion Jocey at the helm. Many of Don’s homes were gathering points for friends and family to enjoy the beach life he so coveted, and to partake in the nightly ritual of toasting the sunset.
Don’s greatest love in life was his children. As a true patriarch, his dedication to his children was unwavering. He ensured that they were able to partake in the carnival that was his life, whether that meant being backstage at rock concerts, taking trips to Aspen or taking in a theme park riding on his shoulders. While a natural athlete himself, Don took time to coach and instill a passion for sports in his kids, sometimes traveling just to be there for support.
Don will always be remembered as having a larger than life personality and having a profound impact on the lives of those around him. He was passionate about his family, his partner Cheryl, his friends, his dog and his music. His gregarious nature, illuminating smile and sparkling blue eyes will be greatly missed, but he leaves a legacy of love and a true example of a life lived to the fullest.
His Memorial Service will be held in the coming months. Please check http://www.toalebrothers.com/browse/letter/L for an announcement regarding the date/time for the service.