Westport After over 39 years of welcoming people with a smile and always having something nice to say on the chilliest and ugliest days, long-time Westport employee Bruce Estus has retired.
“I didn’t expect I was going to work with the town as long as I have when I started,” Estus said. “But I think I’m going to miss getting to talk to such good people, at least for a little while.
“I’m going to focus on enjoying life and my hobbies now, I caught the shutter bug years back so I’ll have a chance to take more pictures,” Estus said.
The long time employee was honored by town employees and town council members with a surprise party at the town highway garage on Feb 21, to celebrate his decades of work for the town.
“I was surprised they did this for me, just thought it was going to be like any other lunch,” Estus said.
Town Councilman Michael Tyler presented Estus with a plaque commemorating his many years of service and thanking him.
Estus, an avid lottery player was given a stack of lottery tickets or, “retirement funds,” and a gift certificate to Staples so he can print out photos he takes of Adirondack scenery and more. Lastly, party-goers decked the guest of honor with a faux gold chain that with a shiny word, “Retired,” to label him.
Estus has worked in various areas of the town since 1974 and in 1980 he was hired full time as a laborer with the Highway Department. Over the years he said he couldn’t think of any negative stories or secrets of the job but wanted to project it was the people around him that made the job worthwhile and kept him coming back for all the years.
“Just the nicest people, locals and out of towners come up to me and ask me, ‘your a local, what do you think the weather is going to be like? Your a local what do you think there is to do around here?’” Estus said. “I always liked to hear from them.”
Estus’ last day of work was Feb. 26. For his retirement he said he is going to relax.
“I just want to enjoy life more, pursue my hobbies, riding scooters, gardening and photography,” Estus said.