93-year-old South Carolina shoe cobbler: I'll never quit

By Liz Lohuis
Published On: May 16 2013 07:26:06 AM HST

To make some extra money for his family in the 1930s, Henry Linder started repairing shoes, and 76 years later, he's the most popular shoe cobbler is Spartanburg County.

LANDRUM, S.C. -

To make some extra money for his family in the 1930s, Henry Linder started repairing shoes, and 76 years later, he's the most popular shoe cobbler is Spartanburg County.

Linder said he tried to retire once 22 years ago but he missed his customers too much.  Now he said he plans to continue his life's passion for as long as he can.

About a mile from Main Street tucked behind his Landrum home, is Linder's shoe repair shop.

“You'd be surprised sometimes the jobs that you get,” said Linder.

It started as an after school job to during the Great Depression in which Linder earned $1.25 per week and has turned into a full-time career in craftsmanship.

Day after day, starting bright and early, Linder stitches, sews and patches.

“I guess that's about all.  Just fixing shoes,” said Linder.

But to Linder it's about much more than shoes.

“I got the best customers in the world.  They tell me their troubles, a lot of them.  It's kind of good to get your troubles off your mind sometimes and tell other people,” said Linder.

As for when he'll retire, Linder said that's God's decision to make.

“When the Lord comes and turns my toes up,” said Linder.

Linder has been featured in countless local newspaper stories, and was the grand marshal in Landrum's 2008 Christmas parade.

“How much they love my daddy, it's just something to be really proud of,” said Linder’s son, Tim.

Yet his family said you won't find a man more modest than Henry Linder.

“It's just an everyday life,” said Linder.

A local cinematographer thought Linder's story was so special, he made a documentary called "The Shoe Cobbler."  The short film won the Community Choice award in the third annual CNN iReport awards announced this week.

The film was picked by audience votes from among 36 nominees.

Comments

The views expressed are not those of this site, this station or its affiliated companies. By posting your comments you agree to accept our terms of use.
blog comments powered by Disqus