The final retiree of the Smithtown Central School District announced during Tuesday's Board of Education meeting belonged to a familiar prominent face at the meetings and of the district – Superintendent Edward Ehmann.
The meeting was the last of Ehmann's 38-year career in the district, which began as a custodial worker when he was 16-years-old.
"I've been blessed, 38 years in this district, met great people and great students, I've had folks that I had in school that went on to be very successful adults and they come back and thanking me for being a big influence in their lives," he said. "That makes all of us educators feel gratified."
Ehmann will end his 38-year career Wednesday and said the time to leave couldn't be more right.
"It feels a little strange in that I'll miss all of the relationships and the pace of course is so much faster than retired, but I really believe that it's time," he said. "It's really important to have the next generation come in, have fresh eyes on a situation. I've been in the district in every capacity since 1965 as a kid custodian, so it's time."
One person who said she will miss Ehmann following the meeting is President of the board Gladys Waldron.
"I think it's delightful to see someone that has come up through the ranks," Waldron said. "It's been a pleasure dealing with him."
What Ehmann said he is most proud of about the district throughout his tenure is the overall quality of all programs and activities the students participate in daily.
"I think there are many districts that have a stronger music department, maybe they have a better business department, maybe they have a better athletic program, but I don't think there are many districts that can match Smithtown's quality in every area of programs, curricular and extracurricular, and that to me is a tribute to the community," he said.
Now that his career in Smithtown is over, what is the first thing Ehmann plans on doing after retirement? Going on vacation with his wife to Turkey.