(Jan. 29) IMMOKALEE, Fla. — Louis Lipman, 78, a founder of Six L’s Packing Co. Inc., Immokalee, died Jan. 16 in Naples, from a chronic illness.

Lipman, along with his brothers William and Arby, three brothers-in-law and his father Max, started the company in 1950 after migrating to the Sunshine State from New York.

Lipman and his partnersbegan with a 40-acre farm in Immokalee and developed the business into what is now one of the largest tomato and vegetable shippers in the East.

In the early days, he partnered closely with grower Warner Moss who worked for Six L’s his entire career. Moss’ two sons, Larry and Randy, continue the family legacy as growers for the company.

“Dad always had close relationships with those with which he worked,” said Lipman’s son, Dr. Joel Lipman of Newport Coast, Calif. “It wasn’t just the top guy at each farm, but also the laborers and many migrant friends he developed over the years. He ran the farming division and his relationships in the fields based upon mutual respect for each other.”

According to his son, one of Lipman’s strongest traits was his will.

“If he was at a meeting to determine what was planted for the following season, he would say yes to the others’ demands but then plant what he wanted anyway,” Joel Lipman said. “If it was left up to him, he would have farmed the world.”

“I knew Lou when I was a county extension agent down in Collier County,” said Reggie Brown, executive vice president of the Florida Tomato Exchange, Orlando. “Lou thought the whole farm always started in the field. That’s the place he always wanted to be.”

In addition to farming, Lipman was a family man and a basketball fan. He played basketball at Long Island University in the late 1940s.

He is survived by his wife, Barbara; three sons, Joel, Rick and Elliot; a stepson, David Kline; a daughter, Robin Lipman; a stepdaughter, Jackie Kline; a brother, William; and a sister, Dorothy Brody.

Services were held Jan. 18 at Temple Shalom in Naples.

The family asks that any memorial contributions be made to Hospice of Naples, 1095 Whipporwill Lane, Naples, FL 34105.