Roland Bailey, 94, and Pauline Bailey, 95, built the Chevron gas station at the intersection of Tarrant Road and Highway 31 over 50 years ago. They celebrated their seventieth anniversary at the Chevron on Tuesday. They have lived in the same house in Birmingham for their entire marriage.
What’s been the most challenging part of running your business?
• Roland: We’ve never had any real trouble operating. The business has always been good to us, and we can’t complain.
• Pauline: The business hasn’t really changed a whole lot. We’re still fixing tires and pumping gas.
• Roland: Gas used to cost a lot less than it is now.
Why did you decide to open a gas station?
• Roland: I just wanted to go into business for myself. I started working when I was 19 years old. I worked for Dupont for 11-and-a-half years after we got married. I worked at the big Dupont plant on Powder Mill Road.
• Pauline: We opened it right after World War II. It’s always been a Chevron, but it used to be on 35th Avenue and 26th Street in Birmingham. We moved the business here
at the same time they were building
What was it like working together as a married couple?
• Pauline: Well, I was the boss! I did all the bookkeeping, and Roland mostly worked the front.
• Roland: We always gave 100 percent.
What do you think has kept you in business?
• Roland: Hard work.
• Pauline: Long hours.
• Roland: Appreciating our customers.
What do you think has kept your marriage together?
• Roland: Love, I guess. Love and care.
Do you have any children?
• Pauline: We gave the business to our son, Eugene, five years ago. We have a daughter, Dr. Rebecca Green, and another son, Kenneth.
— By Ben Montgomery