Claremore Daily Progress

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July 11, 2013

Ward retires after 44 years working with electricity



Ward never did ask for his additional raise, instead other workers told the supervisor that the company should be paying him more.
“If there’s one thing about me that’s different from people I worked with, it’s that I never complained to management about how much I was making,” he said.
Ward worked for Indian Electric for 18 years, then moved to Skiatook for two years, before settling in Claremore.
“For a fella that had a fear of heights, I’ve come a long way. I never really did overcome that fear, even after climbing 90-foot poles,” said Ward. 
“There’s an old saying in line work, ‘The money’s at the top of the pole.’ If a fella’s going to be a lineman, he’s going to need to climb and work a pole.”
He said back when he started, lineman didn’t have a bunch of bucket trucks, they just worked off the pole.
“With all of the bucket trucks now, climbing a pole is somewhat rare, but safety is still a priority. Our employees complete safety reviews before each job,” he said.
Ward said he’ll miss working in electric; however he won’t miss customer complaints due to flickering and power outages.
“Claremore hasn’t been as bad with complaints as other cities I’ve worked in. We have a good system here, it’s just that people recognize the flickering more because more electronics are being used,” he said.
As for plans after retirement, Ward will take two weeks vacation and then see what comes after that. His wife and him plan to visit family in North Carolina and Stillwater, as well as spend more time with grandchildren.
With two grandchildren in Claremore, Ward said his wife and him have no plans to move anytime soon.


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