EVANSVILLE, Ind. (WEHT)– Deneta Norris said she’s worked at Red Lobster for 45 years.
“It’s my second family- I’ve met a lot of really nice people here. I got to know a lot of families and watch their families grow up as well,” Norris said.
Norris said this restaurant was the start of her own family as well- she met her now husband while working in the 70s and the two have been together since. But now, after many years and memories, Norris said it’s time to say goodbye and retire.
“We have a brand new home we just built. I have a park where I live at so I’m ready to ride bicycles and spend time with my family and my grandchildren and do some traveling,” Norris said.
But her family and friends couldn’t let her hit this new milestone without a proper sendoff. A back room was packed with these loved ones, cupcakes, cakes, and balloons to celebrate this moment on her birthday. Coworkers told Eyewitness News it was a chance to reflect on the impact she’s made during her time there.
“She’s always been there to give advice, because she’s also kind of done everything in the restaurant also over the years. She’s always been like a mentor to all of us,” Kerry Guerin, service manager, said.
“Just love the lady. Everybody that she’s touched over the years and regulars that have come here and people that have worked here,” Kevin Warren, general manager, said.
“She’s touched so many people’s lives here at Red Lobster,” Andy Thompson said.
Norris said these people truly have touched her as well.
“Thank you that’s all I can say. It’s just been quite a journey. I’ve had the experience of my life here and I’ll never forget it,” Norris said.