Post office closes after almost 50 years on Fort Myers Beach

Reporter: Emma Heaton Writer: Jack Lowenstein
Published: Updated:
Inside the Santini Marina Plaza post of and Gifts By The Sea shop on Fort Myers Beach. The post office and gift shop closed Wednesday, July 28, 2021. Credit: WINK News.

A town staple is shutting its doors after nearly a half-century. Many loyal customers stopped by to say their final goodbyes to the post office, the gift shop and the two staff members who held the business together.

The U.S. Post Office on Fort Myers Beach had stood in the Santini Marina Plaza since 1971. The post office closed officially at 4 p.m. Wednesday.

“Oh, farewell dear friends,” said Lorrie Wolf, the owner of the Santini post office. “Because it’s a small store on a small island and my customers are my neighbors, are my friends, and it’s, it’s very bittersweet.”

The post office was operated for almost 50 years, and Wolf owned it for 14 years along with Gifts By The Sea under the same roof. She told us it was business as usual up until the pandemic.

“But as soon as the shutdown occurred, all of my employees quit because they were all elderly as I am,” Wolf said.

The employees of this post office were afraid to return, but Wolf continued working six days a week by herself.

That was until businesses reopened, and one of her employees returned, Terry Callow, who goes by “Mr. Everything.”

“I run the post office, the gift shop, wait on customers, just have a ball with people,” Callow said.

Together, Callow and Wolf kept customers coming back, including Kaitlyn Murray, who says she depended on them.

“We use it a lot to ship out stuff for our own business, and I see people on a regular basis,” Murray said.

Murray and so many others stopped by to say one last goodbye.

“It’s going to be a difficult farewell for me,” Wolf said. “But I’m staying on an island. I still have all of my friends, and I’ll see all my neighbors.”

Callow locked the doors for the last time at 4 p.m. The nearest post office is 4 miles away from the now closed location.

“This kind of hurts to see a store go under, but I’ve been privileged to work for her,” Callow said.

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