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SCIENCE/TECHNOLOGY : How to Spend Your 75th Birthday? Assembly Line OK With Myrt Baxter

February 23, 1988|David Olmos, Times Staff Writer

Myrt Baxter will celebrate her 75th birthday today on the assembly line at the Datum electronics plant in Anaheim, and she doesn't seem to mind a bit.

"I'm working for a good company. I know a lot of people here," she said. "It's no big deal."

Baxter, an electronics assembler, has worked at Datum since 1973 and is the oldest of the firm's 200 employees in Anaheim. But she's not the only senior citizen at Datum. The company has seven employees 65 or older.

Datum has no mandatory retirement age and has found that many seniors are able and dependable workers, according to Martha Gibbs, the company's personnel manager.

"Many of these people have worked together at other companies before here," Gibbs said. "They've been with each other and know how to work together."

Moreover, Gibbs said it is becoming increasingly difficult to attract younger workers to assembly-line jobs.

A native of Minnesota, Baxter began working at Datum after spending 11 years with Hughes Aircraft in Fullerton, El Segundo and Culver City. She lives in Placentia with her Yorkshire Terrier, Buttons.

As for retirement, she says, "I haven't given it much thought."

For her birthday, the company plans to throw a little party for Baxter and present her with a dozen roses.

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