Roberto had two non-military jobs from 1958-1961. This was the time between his U.S. Air Force and Army careers. In November 1961, he enlisted in the Army.
First, Roberto worked for the Singer Sewing Machine company. Back then, there were pedal machines. He helped fix the sewing machines, and he was a sewing machine salesman. He learned everything about the machines, fixing them, and helping the people who worked for the company. Roberto also learned how to sew on them. He was out of high school and had just quit the Air Force when he started working this job. He had that job for about a year and a half. The pay was limited, but seemed like the best thing to do at the time. Roberto had a lot of female customers. One of the reasons that he quit was that upward mobility was nonexistent.
The Singer sewing machines were good sewing machines. To hear more about Roberto’s experience working for this sewing machine company, his role, and what he did: Click on the link below.
Here is a picture of an old Singer sewing machine to give an idea of the kinds of machines that Roberto worked with.
Second, Roberto worked in a hotel after his time at the sewing machine company. This hotel was called Hotel Montameri in Puerto Rico. At this hotel, he had a job at the front desk. Roberto was a bookkeeper for the hotel. He worked during the graveyard shift. Roberto was also a translator and handled all of the Hispanic customers and other English-speaking customers as well. He did that for two years. The pay was not the best, but he was single and living at home. The hotel was close to a military base. He thought that was a dead-end-job too, so he rejoined the service.
To hear more about Roberto’s experience working at this hotel: Click on the link below.
After Roberto retired from the Army, he had an instructor position with Midlands Technical College in Columbia, South Carolina, teaching business administration and basic management classes. He then worked for the Department of Disabilities and Special Needs as a training coordinator in Midlands Technical College. Roberto also trained the department heads. He did that for 19 years. Roberto loved every minute of it. One of the reasons why was because he got to talk a lot: “I got paid for what I do best. What I do best is running my mouth.” – Roberto Molinary
Roberto was a loved teacher. Recently, a former student recognized Roberto at a children’s fair where he was with his family. She recognized him because of his Puerto Rican accent. She attended the college he taught at and just wanted to say hi. This story illustrates how Roberto was memorable and a good teacher. A former student recognized him over twenty years later.