Local Crossing Guards Honored for 50 Years of Service

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Cherry Hill, NJ (WTXF) Two crossing guards in Camden County have been working together for 50 years braving all types of weather to make sure kids get across the street safely. Now, their community is saying thank you.

FOX 29's Jennifer Joyce brings us their story more than five decades in the making.

Claire Bauman and Helen Nitz have spent their mornings and afternoons for the last 50 years as crossing guards.

“I started here at 37. Here I am at 88 and I still feel 37,” Nitz told FOX 29.

Bauman, now 87, says her husband was a Cherry Hill police officer and the township needed crossing guards. He urged the ladies to sign on.  Bauman wasn't sure she wanted to deal with the cold, rain, sleet and snow day in and day out.

“The Sgt. called me and said I need you. I said ok I'll give you a week and here I am 50 years later,” Bauman explained.

Bauman works at Horace Mann Elementary and Nitz crosses students outside of Russell Knight. The ladies met in 1st grade and have been best friends ever since Bauman and Nitz started the positions in 1965. Eventually, their husbands passed away and now 50 years later the job gives them purpose.

“It's an asset to watch them grow - parents walk the kids - little ones in the stroller then you see them go to 1st grade it is something to watch them grow,” said explained.

Nitz says she still gets Christmas cards from students she met in the 70s and 80s.  Parent Elliott Castillo says these ladies are making a difference in the children's lives.

"At the very beginning my daughter wouldn't look up or say hi. But she always kept trying and now she has my daughter saying good morning every morning," said parent Elliot Castillo.

The bond with the children and a true dedication to this community has Cherry Hill Township saying thank you on Tuesday night. The township is honoring the pair with proclamation and small gift for their service.

"We definitely appreciate their service and want them to understand that the resident appreciate service as well," Cherry Hill Police Chief Bud Monaghan.