After seven decades of work, 91-year-old Betty Glover is finally able to retire.
The Oregon supermarket worker had to take matters into her own hands, setting up a GoFundMe fundraiser to raise the money that will allow her to rest.
The grocery store clerk told the outlet she needs her retirement savings to pay her monthly bills, medications and groceries, and wasn’t able to make enough money to pay off her residence.
Glover has worked as a cashier at a South Medford, Ore., grocery store for 10 years, reports KDRV, but she realizes it’s time to focus on other things.
“I’m used to working and I hate the thought of not working but then I decided that I would like to enjoy my grandchildren and my great-grandchildren,” she told KDRV. “I’ve even got a great-great-grandchild.”
Her granddaughter helped her set up a GoFundMe, and Glover has watched the figure climb to almost US$75,000 in the time since it launched — far surpassing her initial goal of $40,000.
“I’m speechless,” she said. “I didn’t think for a minute that people would be that generous. Even if it’s whatever that they can afford, it’s amazing that they give it to me.”
According to the Rogue Valley Times, Glover was born during the Great Depression and has worked her entire adult life, sometimes juggling two jobs at a time. Growing up on a farm, she’s shocked to see how expensive retail groceries have become.
“I was one of the lucky ones. I lived on a farm, so we had plenty of meat and veggies and fruit and milk and eggs,” she said.
“One of my jobs was gathering the eggs. It’s crazy to see how much eggs are right now. We had enough chickens that, every once in a while, we’d sell some. I can’t remember for how much, but bacon was 15 cents a pound, and that was in the store. If mom didn’t make bread, it was three or four cents for a loaf.”
In an update posted to the GoFundMe last week, Glover shared some good news.
“Thanks to all of your support and generosity, my last day in the check stand at WinCo will be May 1st!” she wrote, saying her retirement comes just a few days shy of her 92nd birthday. “I am still amazed at the outpouring of support and kindness. Thank you all so much.”
According to recent statistics, Americans today are working longer and retiring later, with the average retirement age for men rising three years over the past three decades and the average retirement age for women rising slightly more than that over the same period.
Alicia Munnell, director of the Center for Retirement Research (CRR) at Boston College, told Forbes magazine that in 1992 the average retirement age for U.S. men was 62, while it was 59 for women.
By 2021, the ages had risen to 65 and 62, respectively.
Experts point to both a longer life expectancy as well as a lack of savings and reduced Social Security benefits as equal factors in a rising retirement age.
Enjoy your retirement, Betty.