Heartland woman retires after 63 years with company

CARBONDALE, IL (KFVS) - A woman retires after 63 years with PK's in Carbondale.

On Sunday, June 3, PK's celebrated Gwen Hunt's 84th birthday along with her retirement party.

They had pictures of her hanging on the wall, memories and things collected from years past, and chicken and dumplings which they make for her every year on her birthday.

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PK's manager Curtis Conley has been an employee and manager here for a dozen years. He said Hunt was a special of a person as they come.

"I've worked here for twelve years. Lived here for 35 and there are people from before I was born that come here every day and know her really well," Conley said. "They have stories that I can't even begin to tell you. She's always been a really compassionate person and has been a big part of people's lives for a long time. It's hard to even put together how much she means to so many people in this town."

Many others at the establishment knew of Hunt and each had their own story to tell about her from years past.

"She'll be missed by a ton of people," Conley stated. "Every weekend people come in, 'I was here in 1972 or 65 or 84.' They always have a story about Gwen and this places has gone through many different phases."

Conley, along with many others, said it's amazing how long she has been here and will be forever remembered.

"I don't know any businesses, I'm sure there are some businesses that old but not with one person that's there every single day and running it," Conley said. "It's hard to fathom and it's weird her not being here. I'm happy for her. No one deserves retirement more than anything. I never thought she would actually do it."

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