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Wish granted Woman, 95, returns to work
Spends lunch hour greeting customers at eatery

While many people may want to get away from their jobs, for Helen Facemire going back to work for at least a day has been a dream for many years.  

Luckily for the 95-year-old resident of Cumming Nursing Center, staff members often set up wishes for those who live there through a national program called Second Wind Dreams.

Facemire’s wish was granted Tuesday when they arranged for her to spend the lunch hour greeting customers at the Chick-fil-A restaurant on Atlanta Road.

Facemire’s daughter, Kathy Butcher, said her mother worked for nearly 25 years at the Chick-fil-A location in East Point, near the Atlanta airport.

Butcher said her mom began the job when she was nearly 60 and retired from the restaurant at 84. It was her first job outside of the home.

“She always talks about her time working at Chick-fil-A,” Butcher said. “She was really excited about getting to greet customers again today.”

Mike Ridzon, operator of the local Chick-fil-A, said he and his staff were delighted to welcome Facemire and several Cumming Nursing Center staff members. 

“I’m just lucky to be in the position where we can engage this and let this happen,” he said. “What I understand about Helen is she did a great job … I talked with [the operator] she worked for and she couldn’t say enough about Helen.”

Ridzon said he was blown away by the strong impact her employment with the company had on Facemire’s life.

“I know a lot of times we make impacts on our team members’ lives, but quite honestly you could have knocked me over with a feather when you listen to a 95-year-old person talk about how she worked from 59 years old to 84 years old.

“Obviously, that experience had a great impact on her and I’m applauding the fact that [her operator] and team members had such an impact on her life. That’s about much more than just chicken.”