West Covina car salesman sets a Guinness World Record

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Deane Salter lives about a block from his workplace.

He could walk. But instead, he said he drives his company car, a GMC Acadia.

Salter, 85, has had a company car ever since he became a car salesman — a profession he’s worked at probably longer than anyone.

And now, he has proof.

Salter was recognized this month by the Guinness Book of World Records for having the longest career as a car salesperson at 54 years and 4 months.

“I’m surprised, I didn’t even consider it,” he said. “It’s just time’s gone by fast, it’s been fun, and business has been good to me.”

Salter said he’s spent all those years working at Reynolds Buick GMC in West Covina. The dealership has been in the Reynolds family for 97 years.

Salter said the Guinness recognition came about after one of his co-workers asked how long he’d been working at Reynolds.

When he said “at least fifty years,” his co-workers began to do some snooping. They had to find a way to verify that Salter had been working as long as he said.

“They finally found a pay stub that verified it from my paycheck and that did it,” Salter said.

Salter said he’ll turn 86 in a couple weeks, but has no intention of cutting back his hours at the dealership.

He works every weekend as part of his full-time schedule. But, he said he still finds time to have fun. He just traveled for a week to Alaska with his wife, four of his five kids and their spouses.

Salter said he can still remember the first car — or truck, actually — he sold: a red pickup to a glass company in Azusa. However, he said he couldn’t tell you his favorite car he’s sold.

Telling you what his favorite thing is about going to work is much easier. It’s the people.

“I can’t think of a better dealership to work for. It’s like working for your own family,” he said. “We have fun together and we’ve worked together so long, we know each other’s families and everything. There (have) been a lot of changes, but over the years, it’s been great.”

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