FLORENCE, S.C. (WBTW) — Marty Massey has been at Piggly Wiggly for 50 years.

A drop-in celebration was held for him Thursday morning at the Piggly Wiggly on Cherokee Road in Florence commemorating his 50 years of service.

Massey stood at the door like usual, greeting and welcoming people with his kind spirit and sweet smile.

Massey said the one thing that has kept him going for 50 years is his love for people.

He joked that although he reached 50 years, retirement was not in the question yet because he wouldn’t be able to greet people and let them know that regardless of race, creed or gender, they matter and are loved by God.

Massey started his journey at Piggly Wiggly in Garden City, Georgia, as a bagboy when he was 16.

“I fell in love with it and never stopped,” Massey said. “Today I am 66 years old and today we celebrate 50 years of being employed with Piggly Wiggly. I just kept going.”

Massey has been through several Piggly Wiggly stores. The first Piggly Wiggly store he ever managed was in Chesterfield, South Carolina, at the age of 22.

You can hardly find a role at Piggly Wiggly that Massey hasn’t done.

“I have had several promotions — I have been District Manager in Charleston and Florence, but the Piggly Wiggly here at Cherokee Road is my home,” he said.

Massey said when the original location at the Florence Mall closed two years ago, he thought that was the end.

“I thought that was the end of the world,” he said. “But we came here, and spent almost a million dollars here, remodeled this store and our business is up about 250%.”

Massey said he believes the customer always comes first.

“We live our lives by the golden rule, and this is in the bible,” he said. “We treat people like you want to be treated no matter their nationality, color, or how rich, poor, or educated they are. We love on everybody that comes through that front door.”

Massey said his 50 years has been more than accolades and accomplishments. They have been about loving on people.

“Love comes full circle,” Massey said. “The love will come right back to you. I still got good health and good mind and I’m not ready to retire yet because I wouldn’t be able to love on the people walking through that front door every day.”

Taylor Ford is a digital journalist for News13. She joined the News13 team in January 2023. Taylor is a Florence native and covers the Pee Dee out of News13’s Florence Bureau. Read more of Taylor’s work here.