Janitors May and Hendricks set to retire

Matt Zelenin , Staff Writer

The sight of Principal Mark Fletcher, dressed in suit & tie, standing on top of a big, green tractor, is not a sight many at South can attest to have seen.  But over the course of 40 years of working as a janitor at South, Eric May has seen a lot happen to the school as the building and students have changed over time.

Both May and fellow janitor Gerald Hendricks are retiring after this school year ends.  Hendricks has worked at South for 16 years now, and went to school at the old Bloomington High School.

“11:30: that’s clock out time,” Hendricks replied when asked about his favorite memory from working at South.  Both janitors start work at 3 p.m., and usually clock out at 11:30 p.m., but often have to work past that.  While the work is difficult sometimes, May said it often can be fulfilling when students are thankful.

“I remember a kid who thanked me for taking the time to talk to him,” May recounted.  “He needed someone to talk to cause he didn’t have a father.”

When asked about the workload of being a janitor, both janitors agreed it was a different experience every day.  Usually work starts on the first floor, and gradually moves to the upper floors as time passes.

Both janitors plan on a home life in Bloomington after retirement, with their respective families.