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Sparta village clerk decides to retire at 90 | News

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Sparta village clerk decides to retire at 90

Sparta, Mich. (WZZM) - For many, the retirement age is 67 -- but not for Greta Heugel. She has decided to retire from being the Sparta Village Clerk just as she turns 90.

"I am retiring as village clerk after 18 years and three months," explains Greta.

She started the job at the age of 72. That's when most people have already retired.

"I have decided that at 90 years old, it is time to quit while I am still on top," explains Greta.

Greta is a mother of four sons, with 15 grandchildren and 14 great-grandchildren. She was married to the late Eugene Heugel, who was the police chief of Sparta for over 19 years.

And at 90 years old, she has lived and worked a full life. Her first full-time job was in 1942, in advertising at Sears. She later worked at the Sparta Sentinel-Leader, and as a copywriter at Meijer. She also worked as a correspondent for the Grand Rapids Press Press.

"I have retired more than once," explains Greta. "I retired first at 63, but it didn't stick."

She decided to run for village clerk when a friend encouraged her to do so as a write-in candidate. Then, 130 people spelled her name correctly on the ballot, and that helped her get the position, which she kept for the next 18 years.

"I wanted to be part of this community and being clerk is a very interesting job," says Greta. "It entails taking minutes of the regular meetings, special meetings, signing all ordinances, resolutions, and swearing in the police. That is all it is."

But she adds she really enjoys it.

Her plan for retirement is simple: live to 100.

"If you knew Greta, you wouldn't expect any less from her. She is an amazing person," explains Sharon Delang, Sparta Village Manager. "Determination. She is just a very determined woman."

She points to a number of reasons for her longevity. She says her interest in people and writing profiles has helped keep her mind sharp, but adds it is her faith that continues to give her strength.

Only time will tell if this retirement sticks.