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Retirees Recognized for Years of Dedicated Service

PHILADELPHIA, PA - Awash in a sea of balloons, streamers, and music, recent retirees amassing decades of service gathered at Market East Station for a grand farewell luncheon.

General Manager Joseph Casey, and Assistant General Manger of Human Resources, Susan Van Buren honored over 200 employees who, after many years of dedicated service to the Authority and the public, retired between July of 2009 and June 2010.

After signing in and receiving a special individual photo to commemorate the occasion, newly retired vehicle operators, engineers, maintenance and administrative staff took their place with their families at festively adorned tables. Several tables were specifically reserved for those who have gracefully bowed out with 40 or more years of dedicated service. This year, 18 retirees achieved this distinction. Two employees, Nathaniel "Sonny" Nix and Milton Trimber, were recognized for reaching a pinnacle not often reached - completing nearly 50 years of employment.

Nix, began work as a bus driver 47 years ago when mass transit in the area was run by the Philadelphia Transit Company (PTC) - predecessor to SEPTA. Ten years later, Nix became an operator on Market-Frankford Line trains.

The former Air Force sergeant knows a bit about adapting. Nix credits his military service with helping to adjust to different machinery and even the elements. "Years ago, the buses didn't have air-conditioning and the older M-3 'El' trains only had ceiling fans when it got hot," said Nix. "When it was 90-degrees, you felt all of it. We have made great progress since then".

Nix appreciates what he has seen and experienced as he reflects on his years with a young Southeastern Transportation Authority. "When you regularly travel a route - particularly the 'El' which operates both underground and on elevated rails - you are able to see people and neighborhoods change from a very unique perspective. From 69th Street Terminal to the Frankford Transportation Center I got a front row seat in my cab and I got to be a part of a little bit of history."

SEPTA Claims Supervisor, Milton Trimber of the Roxborough section of Philadelphia was also honored for an outstanding 45 years of service.

"It was always a challenge," said Trimber who was hired as a Process Server for the legal department during the later years of the PTC administration. "It was difficult years ago when SEPTA was first trying to build its identity, but the change was exciting. One thing that people always appreciate is fairness and honesty and I always tried to give them that".

During the event, two plaques were unveiled revealing the names of all of the recent retirees which will be hung on the 'Wall of Honor' at SEPTA headquarters.

The luncheon provided a special opportunity to recognize the tireless efforts of the dedicated the workforce and their exceptional commitment to enhancing the quality of service provided to customers in the region.

Recent retirees were honored at a special ceremony at Market East Station.

GM Joe Casey (center) personally welcomes and congratulates the retirees.

Casey and Van Buren (l) were able to honor several of the eighteen retirees in attendance leaving with 40 or more years of service.

Nathaniel 'Sonny' Nix and Milton Trimber, retired with 47 and 45 years respectively.

Plaques were unveiled during the ceremony revealing the names of all of the recent retirees.