Cable car operators bring cheer to seniors


Cable car operators and staff from the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency brought holiday cheer to seniors inside the transit agency’s headquarters at One South Van Ness Avenue on Monday.

It was the 35th year that the SFMTA’s Cable Car Division invited seniors from several community centers to a holiday luncheon that included turkey, yams, green beans, dinner roll and a slice of cake.

Students from Ecole Notre Dame des Victoires in downtown San Francisco performed holiday classic tunes while seniors ate their lunch.

A video posted by Jerold Chinn (@jerold_chinn) on

Some seniors left with raffle prizes, which included a foot massager and a 24-inch LED TV.

Derrick Johnson, cable car operator and Cable Car Division chairperson for Transport Workers Local Union 250-A, told SFBay why the cable car operators have hosted the event every year since 1981:

“Cable car represents family. They feel like the community is part of our family.”

Johnson said it was important for seniors to have people around especially during the holidays:

“It can be kind of be depressing this time of year for a lot of people if they don’t have facilities. So we make everyone a part of the cable car family.”

Jennifer Hom, facility coordinator of the Betty Ann Ong Chinese Recreation Center, said many of the seniors have been attending this event for a number of years:

“They enjoy it. It’s a great way for them to meet new people. It’s also just a time for them to kind of relax and enjoy a warm meal.”

About 25 seniors from the Dr. George W. Davis Senior Center in The Bayview also came to enjoy the holiday luncheon.

Classie Kendrick, who works at the center said:

“It’s really nice. We really enjoy it. A lot of our seniors are here. We really do appreciate the cable car luncheon and for the people inviting us.”

Jerold Chinn
Jerold Chinn is the San Francisco Bureau Chief of SFBay. A San Francisco native, he has spent a decade covering transportation in San Francisco. Send tips to or at Twitter @Jerold_Chinn.

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