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People Taking Action: Long-time shipyard employee gets ultimate retirement surprise

Posted at 6:36 PM, Jun 03, 2014
and last updated 2014-06-03 18:36:14-04

Norfolk, Va. - She's worked at the Norfolk Naval Shipyard for nearly four decades, and over the years found time to tutor, take part in cancer fundraisers and much more.

We were invited to crash her retirement party and surprise her with a People Taking Action Award.

She didn't know her co-workers invited us, and she never noticed NewsChannel 3's Kurt Williams sneaking up to the podium. In fact, it wasn't until he started speaking and greeted her that she realized he was part of the tribute to honor her.

He told her a certain individual sent an email saying how special she is and we invited that co-worker, Monita Mason to read that email.

"This person  is always pleasant and a pleasure to be around," Mason read.

In addition to working at the shipyard for 39 years, Patsy is active in the community, tutoring, promoting cancer awareness and just recently graduated from a program to help victims of domestic violence.

Because of that, we presented Patsy with a NewsChannel 3 People Taking Action award. Patsy was overjoyed.

"How sweet! Oh my goodness. I had no idea." We also gave her a NewsChannel 3 People Taking Action pin along with a $100 Visa gift card from our  community partner Southern Bank.

Patsy says she's normally the one doing the surprising of her coworkers. "They did it! They surprised me! Thank  you so much... thank you so much I love you," said an emotional Patsy.

So where does her big heart come from?

"I was always told do unto others as you would have them do unto you; no matter what you're going through, you lift people up and in turn you'll be  lifted up. I was born to do this. I was created by God to do this."