Guys' Shop Patsy retires
At 5 p.m. Thursday, Patsy Travis clocked out for the last time after 39 years as the face of the Guys Shop in Merrill.
The Guys Shop was founded in 1971 by Bill and Mary Vandehey at 910 E. Main St. In 1974, while Patsy was taking time off from work to raise her children, the Vandeheys asked her if she would be interested in working part-time.
“They said why don’t you give it a try and see if it works out. That was 39 years ago,” Patsy laughs.
Patsy made the move across the street to 913 E. Main St. with the Guys Shop. In 1997, Jack and Sherry Kleinschmidt purchased the business.”
“Patsy came with the place, thank the Lord,” Jack said.
Patsy and the Guys Shop made another move two years ago, when Jack and Sherry consolidated their two businesses, the Guys Shop and Thelma’s, at 1025 E. Main St.
“I’ve enjoyed the people I work with, the people I work for and the customers I’ve waited on,” Patsy said. “I’ve actually made a lot of friends in customers. Everybody has been really good to me.”
Jack said he’ll miss the security of knowing the store is always in good hands with Patsy.
“I’ve enjoyed her loyalty to the store, her friendship and the fact that Sherry and I could go away and didn’t have to worry about it,” Jack said.
Over the years, Patsy has seen the same customers many times – often right before important events in their lives. She has helped young men pick out their tuxedos for Proms and Peppermints, and then helped them again a few years later with the tuxedos for their weddings.
“And then I’ve helped their kids with Proms and Peppermints and weddings,” Patsy said.
Patsy has 12 grandchildren and two great grandchildren. In retirement, she’s looking forward to being more involved in their activities. She’s also ready to do some traveling, with a trip to Branson, MO for Christmas already on the agenda.