Irene Manion was born Irene Blackwell in Princeton, did most of her schooling in Princeton and is now retiring in Princeton. She has been a government employee at the local office for 21 years.
“I am like a homing pigeon,” joked Manion cheerfully. “I have lived in other parts of Canada, Surrey, Regina…but I came back and I’m still here and I hope to stay here. If I did ever move away, it wouldn’t be that far I tell you.”
“My job has been really interesting over the years,” said Manion. “I’ve met great people and enjoyed it immensely. I’ve had lots of wonderful customers and worked with lots of great co-workers from one end of the province to the other. In this job, you talk to people from all over the province. I’m going to miss my customers and co-workers…that I know for sure.”
Manion has watched her job change over the years. “I don’t have near the reams of paper to deal with anymore. People do a lot online. We used to have to spend a day filing and we don’t have to do that anymore.”
With two daughters, Jewel and Tara Leigh who both live in Alberta, Manion hopes to be visiting them a lot more often. I have three granddaughters and I hope I will see more of them now.”
“It’s just the perfect time for me to retire,” Manion continued. “Spring is coming and I’m just planning on enjoying my time. Everybody keeps asking me what I’m going to do. I plan on doing not much for a while, but relaxing.”
“It’s been great working with Irene for the last three years,” said co-worker Michele Johnson.
Co-worker Kathy Remple agreed. “I came from 100 Mile House last February and Irene was very helpful with the transition. I will miss her expertise and knowledge. Actually, I’m going to miss Irene period. Irene has been a great asset to our office.”
Irene is known for laughing and having a fun sense of humour behind her professional position. If a customers want his day brightened, Manion was just the one to do it. With a kind spirit and a bit of mischief to make it interesting, she has been known to make even the grumpy break into a grin.
“I will miss her smiling face,” added Michele.
March 28 will be the last day, customers can wish Manion a happy retirement. “It is time,” she said. “I’m going to do my best to enjoy it.”