‘Teenie’ Myers retires from Highland post
March 19, 2014 —
ELDRED, NY — It would have been appropriate for the town to recognize any employee retiring after 26 years of service, which the Town of Highland did on March 11 as Christene “Teenie” Myers left her post as clerk for the town tax collector.
But when you consider that Teenie began work at that position after a life already filled with civic service and at an age when most of us would be hoping to be well into retirement… well, that’s something else again.
Looking not a whole lot different than this correspondent recalls at his first sight of her more than half a century ago, Teenie, now 93, was honored at the conclusion of last Tuesday’s town board meeting.
There was a town board resolution of “Respect and Appreciation” presented by Supervisor Andrew Boyar, who recalled that Teenie’s friendly efforts as clerk resulted in the “unusual sight of people smiling as they left upon paying their taxes.”
County Legislator Kathy LaBuda presented a bouquet and recalled many advice-filled lunches she shared with Teenie.
Lastly, there was a heart-felt gift from town clerk/tax collector Doreen Hanson.
Tearfully, Hanson recalled that one of the best things that happened to her 26 years ago was getting “basically fired” from her then-job as the tax collector’s clerk. As the tax season began that year, she remembered then-town clerk Mary Ann Barnes calling her in for the busy time. “But I had two sick kids at home,” and Hanson could not come in.
In her stead, Barnes hired Teenie and that turned out to be a “a good thing for me.”
It was good, she said, because when Hanson became town clerk 13 years later, Teenie was there. “She taught me and she still does,” Hanson said.
Hanson presented Myers with an Irish claddagh, a pin embodying “friendship, love and respect,” Hanson said.
Teenie said she had no suspicion about anything being up until her daughter Pat, who now lives near Binghamton, called to let her know she would be down to visit that day. She did not speak during the presentations, but was obviously moved. “I can’t believe they’ve done all this for me,” she said later.
She said she was just thankful for the chance to be involved. “I took the job because it was an opportunity to work with all these people,” she said.
Prior to her service with the town, Teenie was, according to the board resolution, the Eldred postmistress, a long-time local Democratic Party committee woman and chair, an active Lions Club member and officer, an American Legion Ladies Auxiliary member and “always one of the persons who first volunteers to help anytime a neighbor is in need…. ”