Mr. E' on the move

It is official, beloved librarian will retire at end of year; but will hold position until replacement is found

So many books, soon more time.

Stephen "Mr. E" Erskine, chief librarian of Cayuga County's Seymour Library, will retire after 36 years in the stacks. His staff delivered an open house for library patrons to stop in and say good bye last Sunday afternoon Dec. 3.

Readers came in droves into Seymour library, which was decked with white floral arrangements, platters of holiday cookies and punch bowls. Warm apple cider scented the air that was also filled with live music and conversation. This was not the usual stuff of libraries, but then again, Mr. E. was never one's usual librarian.

Library employees were easily identifiable with red sequinced bow ties, and greeted the crowd in their usual helpful and endearing fashion. This is a guest relationship attitude that definitely starts at the top.

If you've never met Mr. E, he is a stately looking man with an unexpected twinkle in his eyes. Meaning at first he has such an intellectual look that he may seem unapproachable, but when he fastens his baby blues on you and flashes his boyish smile, you can't help but dive right in to a pleasant encounter of merit.

Skaneateles' Cathy Piccirillo runs the office. She agreed with the rest of the staff that Mr. E has a great sense of humor. But also she said he has a unique way of telling a story, so that one becomes engaged in a subject they might have believed to be totally uninteresting.

"I never had any interest in history, until Mr. E," she said. "Just the way he tells it, is so compelling."

Kathy Hand said, "He is a great boss, couldn't ask for a nicer man."

And Roseanne Servaise added, "He has such a contagious laugh."

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