Woman Who Has Worked at Drillard’s for 74 Years Finally Retires – Without Having Missed a Single Day

Inspiring Stories

They say that if you love what you do, you will never work a day in your life.

That is exactly how Melba Mebane felt every day when she went to her job in the cosmetology department at Dillard’s.

The store opened daily at 10 AM, so Melba made sure to show up by 9:15 to secure her parking spot and get her day started on the right foot.

How One Woman Started Her Career as an Elevator Girl

Melba started at Dillard’s — although at the time it was called something else — in the 1940s when she was 17 years old. She was an elevator girl at first, then she was promoted to the cosmetics department where she stayed for the next 50 plus years. 

Certainly, a lot has changed since Melba first stepped foot in the store, but everything she loves about her job has remained.

“Even [with] the changing times, from where she started to where we are now in the modern world, her values and everything still stand.”

James Saenz

Despite her advanced age — Melba is just shy of 90 — she never called out sick or missed a single day of work. After all, her work was the very thing that kept her young at heart and in good shape!

“I loved everybody there, and I loved to go to work,” Melba said.

Why One Elderly Woman Finally Decided to Retire

If it wasn’t for her health problems, Melba might still be working at Dillard’s now. However, after 74 years of being active in her personal and professional life, her body sent her a clear message: slow down!

She decided to take the message to heart and has embarked on a new adventure: retirement. Her goal is to travel, rest, and eat good food… sounds dreamy!

Melba is sure to have a fantastic retirement, but Dillard’s will have to adjust to not having their star employee on the floor anymore. Her amazing morale set the tone for the store and her many years of experience helped her train and mentor all of the store’s employees. 

Melba is a store staple — without her, there will definitely be a void. The store realized this and threw their oldest employee a huge goodbye party, recognizing both her efforts and the impact she had on the Texas store.  

A Happy Life Is One Where You Do What You Love

Melba’s life is an example of how our jobs can give us purpose.

Melba didn’t even take long lunch breaks because she knew there was often a lunch rush in her department and she didn’t want to miss her chance to connect with customers.

If you find a way to use your talents, do something you truly enjoy and make money — you will have a great life. Follow Melba’s lead; you never know what you can achieve.

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