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Danville school crossing guard celebrates 60 years safely directing traffic

By Justin Ward, jward@wdbj7.com
Published On: Sep 03 2013 05:29:32 PM EDT
Updated On: Sep 03 2013 05:36:12 PM EDT
School Crossing Guard 60 years

WDBJ7

DANVILLE, Va. -

Standing in the middle of a street directing traffic takes a lot of energy and coordination.

A woman in Danville has mastered the trade and helped three generations of students cross the street safely.

Nearly every day for the last 60 years, rain or shine, scorching hot or bitterly cold, Melba Tanksley has directed traffic as the school crossing guard at intersections near schools in the city.

Tuesday her friends, family, teachers and city leaders surprised her at her current post to congratulate her longevity.

Danville police honored her with a Distinguished Service medal and the city gave her a certificate recognizing her work.

"All the years I've worked I've never dreaded going to work. And I can't imagine what it would be like to have to go to a job that you did not like every morning," Tanksley said at her surprise party.

She's 91 year old and says she isn't tired of doing the same routine for the last six decades and has no plans to retire.

She's also been married to the same man for 74 years.