I met Bev Rykosky on my first day working at Berroco. Her friendly face greeted me (as it has every morning since) when I walked through the door. She sat and talked with me for about 15 minutes before everyone else arrived. She did the same thing for Emily last month and I’m guessing many others. In addition to being the unofficial “new employee greeter,” Bev is one of the helpful voices answering our customer service line. Chances are, if you’ve called Berroco in the last 30 years, you’ve talked to Bev.
After more than three decades of hard work, Bev has decided to “see what these golden years are all about.” Her last day at Berroco will be August 2nd. Of course, we couldn’t let her go without the proper recognition, or without sharing her stories!
How long have you worked at Berroco?
It has to be more than 30 years because I have a picture of myself at the old mill in 1983 wearing one of my first sweaters. I wasn’t that good of a knitter, so it took a few years to be able to make that! I started because Phil (Warren’s father) needed a new typist. I had no idea it would last this long.
When did you first meet Warren?
He was in college at the time and he would come home in the summers to work in the mill. He really learned everything from the bottom up.
What’s been the biggest change over the years?
I’ve been doing mostly the same thing, invoicing and taking orders over the phone. But the computers were a big adjustment. Warren loves to tell a story from when the guy came to teach us how to use the computers. Warren said – completely deadpan – “and if you push this button, everything will blow up.” My eyes got wide and I said, “It will?”
Are you still knitting?
I wouldn’t say I’m a knitter. I can knit and purl…and I’ve made a lot of scarves because they’re very easy. I loved the scarf craze. I gave them all as Christmas presents.
What will you miss most about Berroco?
I’m going to miss everyone here. But I already told Warren, if someone’s out and they need a little help, I’m only six miles away! This is the other half of my life. Warren and Caroline have always been like family to me. I love them both. And they really make it what it is. We’re top of the line.
Any plans for retirement?
I have a son and his family in New Orleans, a sister in Virginia and a very good friend on the Cape, so I’ll probably be packing my suitcase! But for the summer, I think I’m just going to chill out, work on some projects and maybe go to the casino.
Do you recognized the Berroco yarns used in Bev’s sweater? (Hint: They belong together.)