Chances are you've seen Anthony Spencer's handiwork throughout Harvey County, even if you didn't realize it. Focused on maintaining the safety of county roads for the Road and Bridge Department, Spencer is a bit of a jack-of-all-trades and his thumbprint is all over the routine work taken on by the department.

Going on 30 years, Spencer has helped the department in many ways, from treating roads in in the winter to helping pave and grade those roads the rest of the year to assisting with bridge repair maintenance.

During last week's icy conditions, for example, Spencer was among the crew members working the roads before, during and after the winter weather moved in to make sure they were cleared for travel.

"We try to be on top of everything because public safety is number one," Spencer said. "We get out there and, if we can, pre-treat two or three days ahead of time."

That Wednesday, when Road and Bridge Superintendent Jim Meier noted crews were out pretty much the entire night laying salt in anticipation of more ice, Spencer was among the number of drivers on the roads — covering at least 30 miles across the county — helping make sure they remained drivable.

"Once you start, then you go back. Then once you do your route, you call and see if anybody needs any help or you go back and retrace your steps and make sure everything's covered to where the traffic can take their route to work or wherever they're going," Spencer said.

Besides helping maintain the roads and eliminating any hazards, Spencer is also the go-to guy when it comes to installing or repairing road signs around the county.

While the county now buys its signs pre-made, Spencer will go out in his mobile unit (with all the necessary tools) and install them or replace any that may have been damaged by weather or other incidents. Recently, that included updating all the stop signs (more than 350) in the county, but there is a wide range of signs — more than 3,000 in total — that he helps maintain.

"Spence is the guy responsible for those," Meier said. "Anytime there's a sign damaged, at all hours of the night, he's the guy."

Involvement in this type of work "got in his blood," Spencer said, as his father was in construction — with Spencer working with him for a number of years before joining the Road and Bridge Department.

Concrete and dirt work were Spencer's main focus in construction and his enjoyment of handling those tasks, particularly the latter, are what led him to his current job. It is a job he takes a lot of pride in and is grateful when that work is recognized.

"You don't get too much praise very often, but when you do it really feels good because you go out there and you try to make the roads as safe as you can," Spencer said. "We're out there for a reason, to make everything (on) the roads good. That's their (the public's) route to get home or to work."