Few people decide to reenter the job market at age 87. According the 2017 U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 8% of adults age 75+ are employed. Even more rare are people working because they want to, not because they have to. The Merion’s Chuck Rickett is proving it’s passion to make a difference in people’s lives – not age – that really matters.
Two days a week, Rickett makes the short walk from the senior living community in downtown Evanston to Lemoi Ace Hardware, where he works part time as a sales associate helping customers solve workplace, household or DIY projects.
“I enjoy customers confronting me with needs or challenging questions and being able to help them with a solution,” Rickett said. “I love to see them leave with a smile and pleased with our services.”
There’s not much Rickett hasn’t seen or encountered when it comes to fixing things. He grew up on a farm in Michigan and later worked more than three decades in the insurance industry where he had experience with home renovations. He also completed renovation projects on his family’s two Evanston homes they lived in.
Rickett’s experience provides Lemoi’s customers with a wisdom and charm that puts people at ease. Perhaps it’s fitting that the hardware store is Evanston’s oldest continuously operated business.
Rickett says The Merion’s location is a great fit for his interests.
“It allows us to be closer to our children, to enjoy time with extended family and all the activities in the area,” said Rickett. “I like the hustle and bustle of downtown Evanston and living right in the middle of it.”
The Merion also provides the health support his wife needs while allowing him to pursue the engaging lifestyle he enjoys – working hands-on with people, bringing smiles and inspiring others.
“She’s comfortable with the range of amenities that are provided,” Rickett said. “I know she has help available if I’m away.”