Life on the Line - Dean Byrd – J.L. Matthews Co., Inc.

Life on the Line - Dean Byrd

While the money is good for a lineman, the work is hard, they miss out on family functions and holidays, and their families sacrifice right along with them. We at J.L. Matthews want to honor the entire home-based crew behind the lineman - wives, girlfriends, parents, children... anyone who loves a lineman. Tell us your story and we may contact you to feature it on our website and social media channels!

 

Lineman's Name:

Dean Byrd

 

What's your relationship with your lineman?

Wife

 

Tell us about your lineman. How did you meet? Was he a lineman when you met him? How did he get into the industry? What makes him tick?

He has been a lineman for 27 years. I met him in April 2017, as a divorced mom and nurse with 10 kids. He is the most amazing, hardworking man I have ever known and I thank God for him.

 

Did anyone in your or his family serve as a lineman (Is he a first generation lineman or were others in his family a lineman?)

He is the first generation.

 

What are you most proud of about your guy working the way he does?

He has a huge heart and always helps others before himself.

 

Are there things you wish you could change about the job?

The pay in South Carolina is not ideal.

 

How have your lives changed to accommodate the job? Do you have unique holiday traditions? Do you do anything special on the days your lineman is home?

We wait until he is home to celebrate holidays. When he is out of state, we video-call as much as possible.

 

How do you manage the crazy schedule and calls that make your lineman drop everything?

As a mom of 10, crazy schedules is nothing new and he appreciates how well I handle it all.

 

Does loving a lineman make YOUR life harder?

No, it makes life so much better. I have never known a better person.

 

If you have children, do they look up to their lineman? Do they have hopes to follow in his footsteps?

His son will probably want to. My kids all admire him.

 

Are there any special ways you stay connected to your lineman while he is working for long periods of time?

I write him notes and slip it into his bag. We video chat and text all the time. I send pics of the kids and me.

 

What are some things customers or employers have done to show their appreciation?

Lots of thanks for the job he does.

 

Tell your lineman's craziest storm/outage story.

He had to go in rain and lightning to cut down a pole while it was burning. He also had a tornado take the bucket cover off the truck while he was standing on it.

 

What was the longest storm duty streak that your lineman worked?

2 months Katrina

 

What crazy experiences have you had on the home front while your lineman was on duty (house flooded, car broke down, etc.)?

Moved all the kids and me into our new house without outside help. We handled it as a family.

 

What advice would you give someone who's thinking of loving a lineman?

Do it! It is an adventure but definitely worth it.

 

Melinda


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