Super Senior: Linda Pecor

Published: May. 11, 2023 at 5:34 PM EDT
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HUNTINGTON, Vt. (WCAX) - In Huntington, Beaudry’s Store may be the heart of the community, but Linda Pecor is its soul.

“The town really supports us,” said Pecor, who bought the store 45 years ago with her husband, Terry.

Reporter Joe Carroll: You ever think about how many steps you’ve taken in this little area?

Linda Pecor: I’m sure we’ve taken quite a few!

It’s truly a family business. Linda’s brothers, Pat and Mike O’Brien, help out. Her sons, Jason and Paul, who grew up in the store, also lend a hand.

“We learned a lot. We learned a lot from all the wonderful people in town. It really was, I think, the community raised us more than anything,” Jason said. She’s out of the store for three minutes, they start going, where is she? Is everything ok?

Linda knows everyone,” said JB Bryan, a local resident.

When a storm cut power to the community last December, Pecor kept the store and gas pumps open with the help of a generator. And the 75-year-old didn’t close during the pandemic. “COVID was tough in a lot of different ways,” Pecor said. There were the masks, of course, but she says the isolation took a toll on the townspeople.

Reporter Joe Carroll: Are you starting to see a community coming back together again?

Linda Pecor: We are starting to see -- very happy about that.

Unfortunately, the “mom and pop” stores around the state are dwindling and Pecor has had to adapt to the times. Cash is no longer king and the credit card now rules the register.

“The whole store has changed with the times,” said Mike.

And Linda is no longer making subs. She rented out a portion of the store to a caterer. But throughout all these years, it’s still the community hub. “You know, my wife will call down here -- ‘Ahh, I think I know where he is,’” said local resident Don Dresser.

It’s the place to catch up on local news in Chittenden County’s most remote town. “It’s a great place. There’s a reason we hang out,” said Jim Christiansen, a regular at the store.

Reporter Joe Carroll: Do you ever feel like you’re a prisoner of this store -- you’re here all the time.

Linda Pecor: No, I actually really enjoy it... Nah, I’m not ready to retire, JB.

Jason Pecor: I don’t see her ever retiring.

Paul Pecor: I don’t either.

Jason Pecor: I think she just will be here as long as she possibly can.

When Terry died in 2015, the kids were worried. “I think that was our number one concern -- how are we going to keep Mom busy. And one of the thoughts was potentially maybe selling the store. And that lasted about three minutes before my mom said, ‘Absolutely not, you’re not doing that,’” Paul recalled.

She’s a merchant, a mentor, and a mom. “I think I play a lot of different roles,” Pecor said. “I enjoy my family and I’m very fortunate to have a wonderful family.”

“It’s the constant. She’s the constant. She’s the one that keeps the community together, " Jason said.