To give some credibility and knowledge to what I have to say, I have just retired after spending 46 years serving the area as meat manager of Cable's Valu King and more recently Calcutta Giant Eagle. In that capacity, I have worked with and associated with many, many people from the tri-state area. The main conclusion that I have found is that there are a lot of good, caring people in our small area of the country. I was able to come in contact with them being in the public eye and the position I held. The friendships I developed with customers, just ordinary people going about their weekly shopping experience, is something I will always remember, and the strange thing is I could not tell you 90 percent of their names - you just grow a bond and the friendship grows, that is how the people of the tri-state area are.
Do not worry about the young people in the area, there have been countless young people who have started their working years at a grocery store, being a bagger, cashier, or maybe working for myself cleaning a meat room or meat cooler. I know the number alone that I have come in contact with must be in the hundreds, not the most prestigious job in the world, but it was a start - it helped parents with expenses, or it helped with money for a higher education to better themselves. I can not remember one truly bad apple, as they say. I personally know ones that went on to be educators, career military, commercial pilots, policemen, safety service directors, doctors, space engineers, nurses, business people, and these are just the ones I can think of myself, there are hundreds more out there I am sure are successful and it started because they were good kids and knew what it would take to be a productive person, especially in today's world. One of my daughters worked with me for a while and found out the meaning of work, and it must have been a good experience for her as she still calls me Dad.
Something to keep in mind in your daily routine, as I have found out, is that some people are at a loss for someone just to talk to, or to let you know how they are feeling, or how they are getting along from a medical condition. They feel better in just having someone listen to them, I have found this out many times.
So let it be known to the people of the tri-state area that you did a fine job raising your kids and I have had the good fortune to have known many of them.
Thomas M. Gill