Headlines

86-Year-Old Waitress Surprise With Dream Vacation to Celebrate Retirement


An 86-year-old Long Island woman served her last meal as she retired from waitressing after 43 years at the same restaurant.

Read: Family Who Took in Friend's 6 Kids After Her Death is Surprised With $90,000 College Fund

Sylvia Smith had worked at the Plainview Diner for nearly five decades and celebrated her retirement on October 21. She told Newsday that it was “a very emotional decision” to stop working.

She told Newsday that she credits her mother for her hard work ethic, saying: "There was no such thing as a stomachache or a headache. We had to go to work; we had to go to school."

On Thursday, Smith appeared on Rachael Ray where the celebrity chef presented the mother of one with a cruise.

“People can finally wait on you now,” Ray said, giving her a massive hug and calling her a “rock star” for her years of hard work.

A smiling Smith said: “It is going to be a great experience.”

Smith told the TV personality that she is going to move to New Jersey and work with veterans or children to pass the time.

Read: Paralympian Gets the Courage to Ask Obama for Selfie at State Dinner

“I have to keep active,” she told the host.

According to Newsday, Smith worked five days a week at the diner and was well known within the community. When she served her last order many patrons celebrated by dancing with her in the restaurant.

Watch: 99-Year-Old Secretary Celebrates Her 80th Year on the Job - and Has No Plans to Retire

Related Coverage