On 28 September 2018, I will retire after 44 years as a line crew foreman in San Francisco. My union job has enabled my wife to stay home with our children when they were young, provided good health care for the family, nice vacations and college educations as they became young adults. The anxiety of retirement years is allayed by a defined benefit package and health care.
Studying labor history and the evolution of the union movements has made me so grateful to the women and men who went before us, suffered the indignities of oppression and prevailed to enable the benefits we share today. Each and every day I am fully aware of those who struggle without the benefits and job security that I am so fortunate to have. In going forward, I hope to work in supporting organized labor and implore my younger workers to study labor history, vote judiciously, and be the bulwark of our democracy.
— 44-year IBEW 1245 member Gene McCandless, PG&E electric crew foreman