John Carter (seated, center) retired from the Park and Rec department after 33 years. He is pictured with all his co-workers on his last day.
John Carter (seated, center) retired from the Park and Rec department after 33 years. He is pictured with all his co-workers on his last day.

Archived Story

Carter retires from Park and Rec department

Published 1:40pm Tuesday, August 5, 2014

By Matt Wilson

For the FCT

After 31 years working for the Russellville Parks and Recreation Department, John Carter is retiring.

Carter started working for the Parks and Recreation as a part-time employee in 1983 and was hired full-time in 1986 by then director, Jackie Bradford.

“It’s a funny story how I got hired on,” Carter said.

“I used to go up there and play basketball all the time and for about two weeks I would park in the reserved parking spot. Bradford would come in there and tell me to move it and I would tell him I needed a job. He would tell me he didn’t have any jobs and that went on for about two weeks.”

Carter said he has seen a lot of mayors come through town during his time at the Parks and Recreation Department.

“I’ve been there for a while and I’ve seen a lot of folks in the town come and go,” Carter said.

Current Parks and Recreation Department Director, Chad Sears, is Carter’s nephew and said he hates to see him go.

“I worked with him for eight years,” Sears said.

“I worked with him full-time and part-time in the summers. They have been good times. Mr. Carter is a well-known man in the community and I know I’m going to miss him down there.”

Carter said he didn’t really want to retire, but after thinking about it, he knew it was just time to do it.

“I really did enjoy working down there and I really enjoyed working with all of the people,” Carter said.

“I have a lot of fond memories from my time there like watching my son play basketball and many more memories that it’s difficult to recall them all.”

Carter said he will miss his co-workers the most now that he’s retired.

“I’m going to miss all of the people that I worked with, especially Buddy Gray, but really just all of them,” Carter said.

“I spent more time with those people than my brothers and sisters so I consider them my brothers and sisters.”

Carter said he plans on relaxing and doing some of the things he was unable to do now that he has the time.

“I plan on going fishing with my grandkids a lot and spending more time with my wife,” Carter said. “It’s going to be nice.”

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