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A Bittersweet Retirement in Monroe County

90-year-old employee retires after 60 years

POCONO SUMMIT, MONROE COUNTY (WBRE/WYOU) - At 90-years-old, Fred Gerstlauer is still a very hard worker. He says, "it has to be right. That's the main thing is getting it right."

He's been an employee of Cramer's Hardware for the past 60 years. He started in his early 30's.

"I did just about everything at Cramer's but be the boss," he jokes.

Fred is so proud of his job that he always wears his Cramer's hat and shirt even when he's off the clock. His wife will be the first to tell you, the place is all he talks about.

"I would have Cramer's for breakfast, dinner and supper every day!" laughs Jean Gerstlauer.

Fred says he's getting very forgetful and he worries about making mistakes. He explains, "you can't be forgetful on this job. It doesn't seem like much, but I gotta make it right."

He's decided it's finally time to retire. Friday is his last day at Cramer's.

He adds, "well, I really don't feel like I'm losing anything. I've gained a lot by working here."

Co-workers wanted to make his send off a memorable one, so they ordered food and bought big gifts.

"It's a sad day but we wish him well. He's been a great asset to the company," says Kenneth Cramer, president of Cramer's.

Fred promises his loyal customers this isn't a goodbye, it's just a "see you soon".

He laughs, "oh yeah... I'll be around I hope, I don't know how long."

Fred says he plans to spend more time with his family and tending to his flower beds.


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