LeBoeuf attends last meeting as Crestview councilman

Brian Hughes | Special to the News Bulletin/USA TODAY NETWORK

CRESTVIEW — Crestview City Councilman Harry LeBoeuf Jr. sat on the dais for the last time March 22 as Mayor JB Whitten, fellow council members and city leaders bid him and his wife, Julie, a fond farewell among accolades of appreciation.

Crestview City Councilman Harry LeBoeuf shares a laugh with Mayor JB Whitten as they reminisce about their service years at MacDill Air Force Base during the mayor’s presentation of a certificate of appreciation upon the councilman’s departure.

During the farewell remarks that opened the meeting, the first lady of Crestview, Ann Whitten, presented Julie LeBoeuf with a lovely bouquet of roses and a warm, sisterly embrace, saying, “We will miss you both.”

The couple are moving to Northeast Florida to be closer to their son, Councilman LeBoeuf explained, so he had to reluctantly resign from his council seat.

Crestview first lady, Ann Whitten, right, presents a bouquet of roses to Julie LeBoeuf as her husband, Councilman Harry LeBoeuf, sits at his last meeting as a City Council member.

Mayor JB Whitten praised his friend and fellow former comrade from MacDill Air Force Base for his wisdom and enthusiasm in helping move the city forward during the transition to the new form of government implemented in 2019 and through the 2020 COVID-19 pandemic.

In a Certificate of Appreciation — being sure to include the city’s mottos for each of the three years LeBoeuf has served — the mayor thanked him “for helping give the city of Crestview ‘a new view’ through your efforts to promote the new charter to voters; for your hard work to help our town be ‘a community coming together,’ especially your work among our senior citizens; and, through your tireless efforts as a councilman, helping us ‘raise the bar’ in the quality, quantity and extent of our city’s services and events.”

North Okaloosa County Commissioner Nathan Boyles chats with out-going Crestview City Councilman Harry LeBoeuf during a March 22 reception for LeBoeuf and his wife, Julie.

“It has been a joy serving with you, but I’ll keep my eye on you, though,” LeBoef said to the others on the dais in his remarks at the close of Monday’s meeting. “The plan is in place, so I leave it in your capable hands to carry it out.”

To the mayor, he said, “It was just as enjoyable and rewarding working with you now as then,” referring to their Air Force days together. Changing the city charter “opened the doors to all the good things we’ve been able to do.”

LeBoeuf also had words of encouragement for the people of Crestview.

“Be patient,” he said. “I realize there is a lot more for us to do. It’s going to take much more than a day to correct our direction.”

And finally, he had some advice for someone yet to be identified.

Out-going City Councilman Harry LeBoeuf and his wife, Julie, take the first cupcakes during a reception in their honor upon LeBoeuf’s last day on the council as the couple prepares to move to Northeast Florida.

“To my replacement, whoever that may be, I give you this warning: Do not screw it up,” he said. “You are joining a great team. If you want to be successful, do your best to assimilate into that team.”

The evening concluded with a reception at Hub City Smokehouse and Grill, during which city officials, residents, friends, county officials and business leaders gathered to offer their thanks and best wishes to the LeBoeufs.

Mayor JB Whitten, second from left, and his wife, Ann, right, present gifts to Councilman Harry LeBoeuf and his wife, Julie, as the LeBoeufs prepare to move out of town.

“I will miss all of you,” LeBouef said. “I gave it my best effort.”