On Sunday, November 6th, 1994, Linda Lynch worked at Braum’s on Main Street in Sapulpa. A day later, on her mom’s birthday, November 7th, she was training to be a teller down the street at American National Bank.
Twenty-six years and a half years later, Lynch is retiring from American Heritage Bank. She told Sapulpa Times she started at the South Main motor bank, where Anytime Fitness now stands, under supervisor Jackie Rivett.
Eventually, Lynch moved to “Main Motor,” the drive-thru at the bank on Dewey and Main. She was there until around 2000, when she moved to the main bank’s lobby, where she has remained, a beacon of light, until now.
Remembering how she started at AHB, Lynch says that someone from the bank, Ruby (Kirk) Misner, Dena Summers, or Sandy Pinkstaff, met her at Braum’s, and asked her to come work for them. “I started from ground zero,” Lynch says. “I didn’t know anything about being a teller or about banking.”
During her 26-year tenure, she has had the opportunity to do other things at AHB, but she was secure and at her best as a teller. “I felt like, if you’re good at something, why not continue,” she says.
And, she acknowledges, “every day is different. Just because you’re a good teller, doesn’t mean you’re going to balance.”
She won’t miss the frequent training that comes with banking and the shifts in technology, like moving from Sharp teller machines to a computer system years ago. It was kind of “a shock..a learning process, but I was able to do it,” she says, with “a lot of praying.”
Lynch says her favorite things about her job are her “bank family, my customers. I just love getting to know a lot of the older people who come in to see me. They needed someone to talk to…a lot of times they didn’t come in to just do business.”
Anyone who has been in AHB’s lobby on a Friday knows that this is an understatement. The other tellers may have open and beckoning windows, but Linda will have 10 people waiting in line just so they can chat with her and catch up.
“Of course, I’m going to miss my customers so much,” she says. Last week, when the bank invited customers in to say goodbye, she says, “Some of them came in and almost started tearing up. They’d ask, ‘Who’s going to take your place?’ and say, ‘You’ve got big shoes to fill!’”
As for what she will do with her time now, Lynch says, “Maybe just rest.” She also has a new house with plenty of projects she can now start and finish, and eleven grandchildren to spend time with.
After a party with her children (son Anthony, and daughters Lashikia, Yvonne, and Ebony), grandchildren, and “bank family” on Friday, her last official day is Tuesday, June 1st. The public is welcome to come say hello and to wish her well on her retirement.
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