93-year-old West Point custodian makes history as one of the military academy’s oldest, longest working employees

Francis Ispeky credits his activeness and longevity to job. He says despite his age, he has no plans to retire.

Blaise Gomez

Jul 2, 2024, 9:28 PM

Updated 19 days ago

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Francis Ispeky started working for West Point in 1969 when Lyndon B. Johnson was president.
“My friend was working down here,” says Ispeky, “He said go down there and they will hire you for the job, and that’s where I am today thanks to my friend.”
Fifty-five years later, the 93-year-old Highland Falls great-grandfather is now one of the U.S. Military Academy’s oldest and longest working employees.
“I was in the mess hall when I started, then I went to the barracks. I’ve been here at Bartlett Hall for a few years. I clean the chalk trays. We sweep and mop,” says Ispeky.
Ispeky is a simple guy. He’s in good health and likes to focus on work.
“If I have to pick up trash, I think about picking up trash," he says.
A lot has changed over the years but “Speky,” as his work friends call him, doesn’t really dwell on it.
“I guess so many things do change but I don’t take notice to that.”
Ispeky credits his activeness and longevity to job. He says despite his age, he has no plans to retire.
“I haven’t thought about that yet,” he says.
He does have some advice to those just starting their careers.
“Concentrate on doing your work the way you’re supposed to be doing it,” says Ispeky. “That would be the best thing to think about and then you do it.”
Ispeky says he likes to listen to polka music and go to Dunkin’ Donuts with friends in town in his spare time.


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