Downtown Vernon Safeway closure an end of an era

Downtown Vernon Safeway closure an end of an era

Saying goodbye 58 times

There are 58 of them. These caring souls have worked either part time or full time at the downtown Safeway in Vernon.

A senior who is a regular shopper told me “They have been absolutely wonderful and so very helpful, I will really miss seeing them.”

Amazingly they all seem to have the same helpful attitude. I’ve watched them as they help the senior souls who frequent the store with regularity. I’ve seen them run after people who may have forgotten something and I’ve heard them share jokes and soft words with those they serve.

If you happen down an aisle where someone is working, they say “hi” and usually ask you if you are finding what you are looking for. I don’t know if it is something they are told to do or if it is just the quality of person who is attracted to work there. Not all stores are like this. This one was special when it came to staff.

As we all know, the store will be closing on Nov. 23. They have been a convenient grocery stop for all the seniors who live in the area and it was easy for those who use walkers or other mobility aids to pick up a few items.

Safeway was sold to Sobeys a while back and now it will become a Freshco. But in order to do that, the current store has to close and will re-open once it is renovated. The pharmacy will be staying open during this time.

Leah, Hailey, Skylar, Erica, Haylee, Connor and Robyn worked at the coffee bar whipping up delicious brews. Then of course there is the deli where Shelley, Janice, Alida, Darlene, Tammie, Nicole, Cole, Kolton, Catie, Julie and Elaine work. If you wanted hot food, a sandwich or a salad – they were there to serve you. Yummy… (great for those lazy supper nights, which in my case is more frequent than not).

Some staff were given buyouts, or offered another location and some will stay on when the new store opens up.

Of course, the store is well represented by the front line cashiers; Madelaine, Laurie, Shinder, Mary-Anne, Carrie, Heather, Robin, Vanessa, Trudy, Kristina, Phillip, Taylor, Amanda, Emily, Jennifer and Bronson. Also helping out in grocery is Craig who happily and willingly does a myriad of helpful jobs for customers and cashiers alike.

Putting together pretty floral arrangements are Larissa and Vicky and next door is the produce department with Scott, Sieg and Dale.

We can’t forget the grocery department with John, Brent, Corrine, Saran, Anoop, Broydon, Kim and Robert. Keeping everything fresh in the meat and seafood area are Paul, Josh, Dillan, Ben, Oksana, Bronson and Amanda.

Then of course, the store management, Sean, Darren and Will who have likely been challenged as this transition takes place.

I’m sure that everyone who reads this column today will join me in saying heartfelt thanks to all of you for everything you did.

We will miss you and wish you all the best in your future endeavours.

— Carole Fawcett is a freelance writer, editor, humourist.