January 4, 2007, - 1:11 pm
By Debbie Schlussel
The death of Garry Betty, Tuesday, is proof that you can be extremely successful, make millions, and die tomorrow, without fully enjoying it or life.
Betty, the CEO of Earthlink, grew the company to what it is today–taking it from 500,000 subscribers in 1996 to 5.3 million, today, and billions in revenue. He won many awards, sat on corporate boards, and made mutli-millions. He was once the youngest CEO a New York Stock Exchange-listed company. Betty was the American success story.
Sadly, Betty died of complications from cancer at the relatively young age of 49.
Of specific note, Betty donated money to and was working on forming a foundation focusing on the use of adult stem cells to cure cancer, the New York Times reported.
He was an avid collector of books. He owned 3,500 first editions and first printings, many of them science fiction and fantasy, and about 10,000 pulp magazines. But he probably never got a chance to relax and enjoy them.
Betty took medical leave from the company in November when he learned of his illness. And learned that life is short.
And that you can’t take it–the millions or the book collection–with you. Remember, it can all be over tomorrow. The politics of envy aside, the angel of death does not distinguish between young millionaires and people of average means.
Garry Betty, Rest in Peace.
Tags: avid collector, avid collector of books, cancer, CEO, Debbie Schlussel, Earthlink, Garry Betty, stem cells, The New York Times, youngest CEO