Friends and co-workers of James L. Tillman gathered Friday afternoon at Newton Town Hall to wish him well.
Tillman has worked for the city's sanitation department for 39 years.
Tillman says he will miss his co-workers and the people he met along his routes.
"It was a pleasure for me to work for the city. I didn't have any complaints," said Tillman. "Every one of my boss men, they looked out for me. So I didn't ever have any complaints, so I just thank God that they let me work that long."
"He worked until he got ready to retire. And that's the remarkable thing about it. Thirty-nine long years he gave to the city of newton. And we're so proud of him," said Ann Mapp, city clerk.
In addition to the reception, the city presented Tillman with a La-Z-Boy chair, donated by the company in recognition of his long service to the community.