WA Health Secretary surprised Dr. Jecha at his retirement party - NBC Right Now/KNDO/KNDU Tri-Cities, Yakima, WA |

WA Health Secretary surprised Dr. Jecha at his retirement party

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KENNEWICK, Wash. -- He's served the Benton-Franklin Health District for more than 20 years. Wednesday, friends and co-workers came out to say thank you. Dr. Larry Jecha's last day was last week, but today friends, employees, and community  leaders gave him a proper send off into retirement..

Jecha has served as the district's health director, and health officer, for more than two decades. Washington State Health  Secretary Mary Selecky flew in from Olympia to surprise the doctor.  

"This was so essential for us to honor Dr. Jecha. His dedication to public health in the state and here in Benton Franklin is just renowned. He has served his community well but he's also served the state well," says Selecky.
Dr. Jecha says although he left last week, he's still been working.  Thursday will be his first day where he doesn't have anything scheduled. "It's going to be interesting.  I'll wake up and for the first time not to go to work," says Jecha.

Selecky also presented Dr. Jecha with a special greeting from Governor Gregoire and State Health Officer Dr. Maxine Hayes.

Dr. Jecha will stay on as a part time health officer for Walla Walla County.