BY JACK SHORT – For Nancy Lynne Hyde, family is everything. When asked what inspires her, innervates her, she didn’t hesitate to say that she loves working with kids and spending time with her family.
She is a licensed real estate agent, working as an assistant to Carol Stewart, and a cheerful participant in the profile process, which can be a little intimidating.
She and her husband, Kevin Hyde, were unlikely allies at one time, working for the same brokerage, but Nancy for another agent. Of course, that didn’t matter in the end, and they were friends before competitors at any rate.
Though Nancy is firmly planted here in Southwest Florida now, she was, let’s say, a little indecisive for a while. She’s moved from Michigan, where she was born, to Florida and back to the Midwest and then back to Florida again a few times before she decided to embrace the place she calls home now.
No matter where she lived, Nancy has always been a hard worker, never afraid to put in her hours. Even in high school, took on as many as three jobs at a time, and only stopped working temporarily to stay at home with her kids until they went to school. Not that she really stopped working, to which any mother will attest.
At the age of 12, she moved to Bradenton with her sister Charlotte, her mother Peggy, and her father Robert. They owned a shoe store, aptly named, “The Shoe Store,” on Cortez Road. She was the youngest of six siblings, most of whom didn’t follow the family to Bradenton. She graduated from Manatee High School, and during her tenure there she worked in her father’s store, in addition to her other jobs, a position she’d revisit in a more serious capacity later.
When she was in high school, she started building a set of clerical and administrative skills that would serve her throughout her life, but also worked for places like HoJo’s and McDonalds early on. As part of a work program at her high school, she began working for an attorney in Bradenton, wearing business-office attire to her high school classes. In 1986 she went to work in a court reporters office, then after about six months of doing very little (she was told to bring a book or small tv with her to work to pass the time), she was considered trustworthy enough to do real court reporter’s work, transcribing depositions and court cases, which she stuck with for a few years until her father needed full time help at his shoe store.
Nancy said she loved working with her father, and felt gratified that he could put his mind at ease knowing the store was in good hands when he wasn’t there. She was still technically a teenager then – she figures she was 18 or 19.
When she was around 20, she married and moved back to Michigan for the first time and would move back and forth a few more times.
When Nancy’s daughter and son, Devon and Colin, were old enough to go to school, she began volunteer work there, first as an assistant in the classroom. But eventually she was acquainted with the staff and they began to call her as a substitute for preschool and kindergarten classes, and for various other tasks like assisting with summer camps and k-clubs.
“I liked it and got to see how much work is really involved in teaching,” she said, but also how much teachers were faced with limitations. She had considered teaching and taken some college courses to that end, but decided against pursuing it.
She went to work for a payroll company after about three years with the schools, owned and operated Curves Fitness while living in Minnesota and finally responded after moving to Englewood, to an ad placed by Gasparilla Properties. They hired her as an administrative assistant. She first met Kevin there, and they became friends.
But she decided to try Minnesota one more time after a few years in Englewood and was finally deterred by the brutal winter.
“I had a VW bug,” she recalled, “and it got covered in snow … and I knew I didn’t want to move back again.”
She contacted Carol again in Florida and asked if there was a spot for her. Carol didn’t have anything at the time, but found a place for Nancy with a local attorney, cautioning him, “You can have her, but you can’t keep her,” Nancy said.
She earned her real estate license and began to work as Carol’s administrative assistant in 2010. When she and Kevin started dating, she was nervous about how her employer would take the news that she was consorting with the competition, so to speak.
“I was really nervous …” she said, “but she was great about it and attended our wedding that December.”
Things grew more and more serious and three years ago they were married. Now she and Kevin live in Rotonda and love nothing more than spending time together – it doesn’t matter what they’re doing, whether visiting St. Pete for a weekend, watching the Everblades play hockey or taking their boat onto the water. They’re planning a trip to Europe this year and are also looking forward to another visit to Lake Placid, where Kevin’s friends own property.
Family is supremely important to them, and their combined family, including five grandkids (Caylee, 4, Olivia, 4, Savannah, 2, Hudson, 2, and Clayton, 1 month), and of course Enzo, a dog whose breed sounds like an Italian wine, is formidable.
Nancy quoted her husband who said, looking at a picture of their combined family taken during a holiday weekend, “If you want to know what’s important to me, just look at that. It’s all right there.”
She added, “Everything comes behind family.”