Entertaining real-life stories with valuable lessons on how to succeed in business and in life
Entertaining and compelling real-life stories. The author is successful business, real estate, and media entrepreneur Dick Kazan.
Published on October 5th 2021
Al Nixon: Uplifting the world one person at a time.

Al Nixon
Al Nixon photo: tampabay.com

Al, 58 works for the St. Peterburg (Florida) water department. Several years ago, he began going to to nearby ocean front Vinoy Park to watch the sunrise.

He would make himself comfortable on his favorite bench and feel inspired by the glow of the sun and the beauty of the water.

Then one day a woman said to him, "You know, every morning when I see you sitting her, I know that everything is going to be okay," Al told The Washington Post.

This changed everything for Al.

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"That's when I knew: I needed to pay attention to people walking past," he told The Post. "I needed to make eye contact and let people know that we mattered to each other."

Al Nixon
photo: tampabay.com

Al began greeting people.

Many of those people began responding to him and some even told him about their lives.

"I was happy to listen. I wanted them to walk away knowing they didn't have to feel alone."

Al Nixon
photo: winknews.com

Now weather permitting, he occupies that bench two hours a day, seven days a week and he has influenced so many people, that he's called the Sunshine Mayor.

"Al is this calm, constant presence, day in and day out," said retired real estate developer Jeff Franzen. "His unique gift is that he listens to everyone."

In gratitude, two years ago, an anonymous plaque was posted on his bench. "Al. A loving and loyal friend and a confidant to many," it states. "Forever and always."

Al Nixon
photo: tampabay.com

"I was stunned when I saw it - I felt honored," Al said.

"You have to have an open heart and an open head, because you never know who's going to walk up and what they might need."

"Every person who stops by the bench deserves my undivided attention."

Editor's Note:To learn more https://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/2021/07/30/bench-advice-sunrise-al-nixon/.

In the next KazanToday: How Mary O'Neill, nearly 100 and 2-year-old Benjamin Olson became best friends.

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