|GM's Eldest Pensioner Celebrates 109th Birthday
The eldest of GM's 455,382 former salaried and hourly employeesand
surviving spouses who draw benefits from the GM pension plans in
the U.S. celebrated his 109th birthday May 5. Ernest Pusey of Bradenton,
Fla., joined GM in Flint, Mich., in 1926, several years after serving
in the Navy during World War I. After working several plant jobs, Pusey
retired in May 1958 as a tool and die maker from Chevrolet's former "Plant
Four" in Flint, which produced a cast-iron engine known as the "Stove Bolt Six."
Pusey's birth on May 5, 1895, predated the creation of GM by 13 years,
the formation of the UAW by 40 years, Buick's founding by eight, Cadillac's
by seven and Oldsmobile's by two. The year he joined GM was the same year that
the first Pontiac was introduced and that GM hired the legendary Harley
Earl, the industry's first full-time designer.
Though Pusey moved to Bradenton after retirement, his family has
maintained a strong GM-UAW connection to the Flint area: One of his four
grandchildren, Craig Pusey, works at the GM Metal Fabricating Division
plant in Grand Blanc.
So to what does the elder Pusey attribute his long life?
"I really don't have any secret," he said. "I eat anything I
want, within reason, of course. I don't smoke and I don't drink very much."
Of the 455,382 former GM employees and surviving spouses
receiving benefits from the GM pension plans as of March 1, a total of 240 were 100
years old or older.