You find some people are a little snotty to you. They come in, in a hurry. I always tell them, "Don't worry, I'll take care of your car for you." I just smile and keep on going. Next thing you know they come back and say, "I'm sorry, I'm sorry. I guess I was wrong." I just chalk it up and mind my own business. I don't have no problem with people.
There's my car right there with my name on it [points to a burgundy Cadillac with personalized license plates.] I drive every day. The pictures on the wall in here are of my kids. I've got three girls and three boys.
I went into the Army on July 9, 1951. I was in Korea. That's where I spent all my time. I was in the third amphibian trucking company. I came out on July 4 of '53.
I went back to New York and started working in a kitchen. The doctor told me I couldn't work any more 'cause my heart was scratched. It was enlarged. So I was operated on. I stayed in the hospital 11 months and 19 days. I didn't do nothing for two years.
My brother begged me to come to Richmond. He drove for Overnite [Transportation] for 37 years. I came here in '78 and started working for Overnite. I couldn't manage the work because of my heart. I had an allotment from the government, but I got tired of doing nothing. I started filling in for the guy here and pretty soon they offered me the job. Now 22 years later I'm still here.
About 16 years ago, I made up my mind I wasn't going to smoke or drink no more, not even a beer. I told myself I was going to stop while I was ahead. I'm not that big of a Christian but I haven't touched either. I feel good. I get up on Fridays and wash my car. I put the wax on and wipe it off. I go inside and watch TV for a while then go to Captain D's for something to eat. I'm just enjoying myself. That's the only thing. You'll never hear me say, "I sure hate to go to work."
As told to Brandon Walters; Photographed by Chad Hunt.
Style Weekly's mission is to provide smart, witty and tenacious coverage of Richmond. Our editorial team strives to reveal Richmond's true identity through unflinching journalism, incisive writing, thoughtful criticism, arresting photography and sophisticated presentation.
We make sense of the news; pursue those in power; explore the city's arts and culture; open windows on provocative ideas; and help readers know Richmond through its people. We give readers the information to make intelligent decisions.