When Line Crew Leader Darvene Montford started working for Carteret-Craven Electric Co-op (CCEC), there were no bucket trucks. When underground service became available, the lines were dug in by hand, and if there was a problem with the line, it was dug up, shovelful by shovelful, until the source of the problem was found.
Montford was recognized recently for his 50 years of service to the cooperative and its members. He is only the second CCEC employee to reach that milestone.
Montford was born and raised in the Bogue community, and still lives there with his wife, Barbara. He started working at the co-op, assigned to the right-of-way crew, just six months after graduating from West Carteret High School.
“We were climbing poles,” Montford said. “We had no bucket, no backhoe and only one Ditch Witch. We did most of the work by hand.”
Montford has served as a line crew leader since 1988 and has no plans to retire any time soon.
“I really enjoy the people I work around and helping the younger ones learn,” Montford said. “It’s a pretty good group of guys.”