Favorite customer died

Discussion in 'Business Operations' started by site, Jun 28, 2002.

  1. site

    site LawnSite Member
    Messages: 168

    He had cancer. This guy saw us working on his neighbors house and asked me to look at his. I almost said no just based on my first impression. I went anyways and he walked me over to a big house right on the beach walks me out into the back yard and sais "I want you to give me a price for putting pavers in the back yard." I look at the back yard and say "Which area?" He sais "ALL OF IT!". I bid it, and he took it -in the end he spent about $70k.
    Whenever a new guy showed up he would learn the guys name and not forget. He offered everyone a drink at least once an hour. He would look at everyones lunch and say "You want some real food? Don't bring your lunch tomorrow, I'm cooking" Then he'd make a feast.
    He asked for instructions on new plants- then dedicated his life to following the directions. He always asked early-"You need a check?"- and never once complained about a price. He'd call in February and get his jobs all lined up so we could get his out of the way and get on to our "Real customers"
    In our last conversation he tells me he only has a few days left, then he starts talking about the next project. He takes five minutes to explain it and sais "I want you to put it on the schedule and do a good job- take good care of Mary" (his wife)
    This guy had a million friends. when I told my guys he was dying they were really sad. I have plenty of customers- but none as fun or as generous or as helpful.
  2. kris

    kris LawnSite Bronze Member
    from nowhere
    Messages: 1,578

    Very touching post ... Im sorry to hear that.

    You were blessed to have had the opportunity to work with this man.
  3. Lanelle

    Lanelle LawnSite Bronze Member
    Messages: 1,361

    Thanks for sharing. This shows that there really are some wonderful customers. Take the time to recognize them and you'll be richer in more than one way.
  4. robert payer

    robert payer LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 282

    Sounds like a terrific guy to have had the opportunity to work for.
    I am sure that he will be missed.
    Had a maintenance customer once who was very similar. He passed away also. Always encouraged us to spend any slow periods in his yard making improvements with out needing communication in advance. I had the greatest respect for his ability to empower and motivate people. Employees often commented that they felt a super natural like feeling when receiving instructions from him. One worker stated that the customer touched his shoulder and it was like or God him self, figuratively speaking. Just one of the coolest class acts that I will probably ever meet. When his wife told me that he had passed it was very difficult. I was very fond of him. It had already been to late to pay my respects.
  5. Stonehenge

    Stonehenge LawnSite Bronze Member
    from Midwest
    Messages: 1,276

    Sounds like a great guy....

    The kind you'd love to work for forever.
  6. What a touching post thank you very much for shareing this .
    We had a custormer we maintained his lawn from 1996 to just this may when he passed away .
    He was a scotsman who was born there and came here as a young man of 35 .
    He gave us the job when he seen our last name he didnt ask nothing about price the only words out of his mouth were are you boys scotsmen?
    Well he became more then a cilent he was our friend and i mean dear friend.
    We would have to put his mowing day on a day when it was light because he would talk endlessly about the old country and his service in the british army.And if we didnt take a snort of his special scotch we would not hear the end of it.
    His wife would fix us haggis ,taties and salmon washed in whiskey and the best porage i ever ate even better then my moms.
    We miss him so much the roaring laughter the thick scottish brogue the long red beard . Two of us were honored to be pall bearer in full highland dress at his funeral .But yet he had become such a stanch american he was buried here not scotland.
    We still maintain the lawn for his wife and our wives our close to her and keep a good eye out for her.
    I and my family will be honored to take her this winter to her native inverness. people like this are rare these days and when i get friends like these i cherish them .
    I wish all our custormers were like this guy all our stess levels would be extremely low.
    It feels good leaveing a cilents lawn with a big smile on your face
  7. Dennis E.

    Dennis E. LawnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 349

    Had a customer like that in the early 90's. Hell of a guy. Was in construction his entire life,an outdoorsman all the way.
    Got real sick and had to make a trip to his doctor. Pancreatic cancer. Very fast moving and not much hope.
    Told me he was not going to "go slow" after he found out the prognosis.
    After surgery and getting hospice care at home he committed suicide at home with his 38 cal. pistol.
    Pretty sad but he went out the way he wanted.

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