In the early 80’s my dad created a catfish producing farm. A flash flood wiped out everything they had built. For the entirety of my father’s life, our family worked together and failed together in his attempt to reclaim the feeling he once had from the farm. We had numerous restaurants and gas stations; even started a pawn/electronics shop trying to find anything to “click”. Eventually we ended up buying 80 acres where we started a mobile home land development. From that, we also started a dirt construction company. As with most anything “new”; we learned some extremely valuable lessons from that business that cannot be taught, only learned through experience. Like some of the mistakes we had made on the financial side. Really there is so much more to this story. To say my family endured struggle through it all is an understatement. We did it all together, endured together, and we grew closer as a family together because of it. I have seen firsthand the amazing Grace of God. The way He provides and gets you through the tough times. I was so very fortunate to experience the things I did growing up though. I learned so very much. As early as the age of 7 I was operating a Mini-Excavator putting in water lines. Anytime my father needed things done, he would show or teach us how to do it instead of hiring it done.
During and after the development, I worked at various other construction companies operating machinery. I have an insatiable drive to be around machinery, because it takes me back to those times and it is where my heart is. No matter where I went or who I worked for, it never was the same as it was when we owned our own business. Though I had an amazing childhood because of the life lessons, training, and family togetherness; it came at a sacrifice to the whole family. I had such an unforgettable time while we were doing the land development. To this day; I can close my eyes and it takes me back to that time. I close my eyes and imagine driving our 4850 John Deere tractor with our dirt pan/scraper (Bowl looking attachment pulled behind a tractor that lowers and digs up dirt into the bowl to carry to another location). I can see my family across the field sitting on the back of the truck, my brother, my sister, my mom, my dad, my brother-in-law, and my nephew. My mom has sweet tea ready for me, my dad holding my nephew, and my family just joking and laughing together.
For as long as I can remember I wanted to have my own business. I guess I got the drive and entrepreneurial spirit from my dad. I recently became a dad myself. I had to make a life decision now so that my child could experience the good experiences I had. I HAVE to make this work and I WILL make this work, not only because it is what I was meant to do, but because I WILL NOT put my family through the rough times like my family faced growing up. I can now close my eyes and picture my wife pulling up and getting our lil Macadoo out of his car seat, putting him on the ground when he can walk well but he goes all over the place when trying to run and seeing him running to ride in the equipment with his Daddy. Or the time when I can see my lil man operating on his own. I want to create a legacy for my son to experience and to have; if that is the direction he wants to go in life. My theory for life is that every child should look at the amazing things and the bad things that his or her parents did or didn’t do. We should all pass on the amazing things, and adjust and change anything that was bad. My son will have every opportunity to operate and own this business. If he doesn’t have a desire for it, then I want to make sure this business provides him the opportunity to do whatever his passion is.
I will try to tell more of my story through a video or videos that I will be posting. I thank you all for reading my cliff note version of my life story. I don’t know what else to say, other than, equipment operating isn’t just a job or a profession for me, it isn’t just a over the night business to make a few bucks, it is my dream and now it is my legacy. It is an escape to a time and a place that is extremely precious to me. It is something that I want to pass down to my boy. I can’t help but to think of the song by Craig Morgan, “Almost home”. Machinery/Equipment has always been where my heart has been. The video on YouTube from Steve Harvey called Jump is very dear to me and hits home so much. This is my leap of faith. This is me trusting and believing and knowing God will get me through.