Jane Reaves marked 50 years with First National Bank last week, having started in the bookkeeping department on Nov. 17, 1970.
She said current bank president Milton Smith’s father asked her to try out being a teller after five years in bookkeeping.
“I said I can’t do that,” Reaves said. “He said let’s try it two weeks – two weeks turned into 45 years.”
The constant activity and interaction with customers ended up being something Reaves enjoyed the most about her job.
“The drive through is my favorite because it’s busy,” she said. “I just love my customers. They’re just like family.”
Smith, who is the third generation to lead FNB, said Reaves is the only remaining employee who worked for his grandfather.
“I’ve seen a lot of changes,” Reaves said, noting when she started there were no computers. “Every time they change something, I say, ‘I don’t know if I can learn that or not.’”
But she keeps learning, and says she hopes her health allows her to continue working for a while.
“Jane has more energy than anyone up here,” Smith said. “You won’t find anyone more dedicated, hard-working or loyal than Jane.”
Reaves and her husband, Morris, have a son, Andrew. He and his wife, Penny, have two sons, Aaron and Andrew.
Reaves, lives in Cord, and Smith noted her dedication to her work despite her long drive.
“She drives 45 minutes each way,” he said. “There have been very few years she has not had perfect attendance.”
Reaves said when the time does come to stop working, she will miss her customers the most.
“We have some really good customers,” she said. “I think I chose the right place to work. I sure have enjoyed it.”
Smith said he is certain that day is still some time away.
“It’s been a privilege to know her and work with her, and I bet we’ll do this again in 10 years if it’s up to Jane,” he said.