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Andover Commemorates Billy Flynn’s 30th Year as Paresky Commons Worker

D.Owyang/The Phillipian

Billy Flynn considers Andover a second home and cleans Paresky Commons like his own house.

Billy Flynn, Custodial Supervisor of Food Services, has been a part of the Andover community and Paresky Commons since 1989. This year is particularly special to Flynn, as it marks his 30th anniversary of working at Andover.

Flynn has been a worker at Andover since he was 20 years old. According to Flynn, his family already had connections with the school prior to starting his work.

Flynn said, “I got to know Andover because both of my sisters graduated from here. I would say that the whole family has close ties to Andover. Apart from that, Frank Hannah, a former math teacher, and [his wife] Janette Hannah all happened to be friends with my parents. Just before he retired, he offered me the job. Ever since, I have been working up until now.”

Having been a member of the Andover community over a span of 30 years, Flynn says that he has made many memories at the school. One event that he recalled was an inter-class food fight between Juniors and Seniors during his first year at Andover.

Flynn said, “One fond and amusing memory that I have from working at Andover goes back to a food fight back in 1989. Apparently, it was Juniors against Seniors. After the food fight, we made them clean it all up. It was really entertaining anyways, because I had to duck to avoid meatballs as I entered the dining hall. Of course, they stayed and cleaned the mess, which was good for me.”

Following the motto of Andover—Non Sibi—Flynn has been demonstrating the spirit of “not for self” by organizing a fundraiser for diabetes patients for several years. A diabetes patient himself, Flynn understands and wishes to help out with many of the difficulties that other patients have.

“A particular highlight of my time here is having the opportunity of doing a fundraiser for the American Diabetes Association and raise well over a thousand dollars. I do this fundraiser every year, because I have [had] diabetes for over thirty years. Basically, if I raise money, it would help all the research related to helping other diabetes patients who go through the same sufferings. I thought it was a good opportunity to help out,” said Flynn.

Paul Robarge, Senior Director of Food Services, agreed upon Flynn’s altruistic personality for others. He noted that even outside of work, Flynn is kind and considers everyone’s well-being.

Robarge said, “We do a couple of employee gatherings every year. Mr. Flynn is always lots of fun to spend time with during those times. He lets loose and ha[s] fun. Most importantly, however, I was surprised by his caring personality for others and how he tried to talk and listen to everyone in the room. Kind of being outside of work, I really got to see his outgoing and caring personality.”

Flynn acknowledged that one of his favorite aspects of working at Andover has been completing tasks with coworkers. According to Flynn, the workers learn from one another in various ways.

“When I came here, I liked all the people who I worked with. All of them were really nice, and they have been communicating with me outside of work, such as teaching me Spanish during break hours. If they did not know how to do something, I would teach them the correct way.

It is all about teaching one another, working together. I would say that I truly enjoy the teamwork aspect,” said Flynn.

Jack Dacey ’20 believes that Flynn has always taken the role as a leader of ARC, a community engagement service for aiding people with intellectual or developmental disabilities. Dacey said that Flynn is always willing to help out other members of the community engagement program.

Dacey said, “Billy is just generally an outgoing person. He is always happy to chat with anyone in ARC. That is where I first got to know him. At ARC, Billy loves to play music as a DJ for the entire group. He loves to hold that leadership role and act as a role model for other members of the program. He really teaches us a lot of stuff and instructs on how to do jobs that we initially are not able to do. I think that Billy is just a caring and charismatic person who tries to better the way we perceive people on campus.”

Flynn says that he is grateful for Andover, particularly for the relationships that he has built with other members of the community. According to Flynn, he feels gratitude to everyone he knows on campus, and hopes to continue such relationships in the future as well.

Flynn said, “I simply love working with my colleagues and just the fact that everybody knows me here, especially the Andover students and faculty. It has been kind of a real favorite place in my life. A lot of people support me, and I want to say that almost a hundred percent of the community knows me. I never thought that I would make thirty years of being here. Since it was my initial goal to work for thirty years, I am proud that I accomplished it. I am grateful to the Andover community for helping me through this.”

Feb 24, 2019