If you are a regular customer at Walmart, you may have noticed a greeter at the entrance.

A greeter with a kind, smiling face and maybe a joke to kick off your shopping in the store.

That greeter is Thomas Holst, who has been living in Yellowknife for over 50 years now. He’s been working at Walmart for the past eight years as a greeter, but he’s a greeter no longer. Holst’s final day was this past Friday and he’s now retired.

“This has been the best eight years of my life.” he said on Friday

Though Holst won’t be able to work for Walmart after a stroke, he said that he is going to spend sometime outside and do some exercises, and he has some helpers that usually come and visit and help him with asks — like a haircut or walk around the city — and he said that he will even come Walmart sometime to be volunteer greeter.

“Thomas is the person that is recognized the most in the store,” Terry Andre, the store manager said. “His friendliness, authentic attitude and his silly — not funny — jokes that he thinks are funny. He said he wants to still come back and hang out with us not on the clock and unscheduled by helping with fund raising.”

While Holst shared some of his memories, he got a bit emotional, remembering such things as sitting at the entrance and trying to get people in a good mood every day.

“What you feel is the heart,” he said. “I’m normally pretty happy, but then something like this happens [retirement], which I never thought about. And some of the people coming up to shake my hand and asking me how have you been, those (things) bring back good memories and I’m happy. That is always the thing — be happy and to keep smiling.”

Kaicheng Xin

Kaicheng Xin is a Multimedia Journalist with NNSL Media. You can reach him at kaicheng.xin@nnsl.com

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  1. Well done Thomas! I remember you. No matter the mood I was in, we would shoot the breeze and I always left Walmart feeling better than I went in – because of you.