Source: News Journal, June 16, 1999
Things Run Smoothly For Parkers For Four Generations
Quality Quick Lube started out as Fairground Garage, next to the old fairgrounds on 5th Street. Dale Parker and his father Hank started the business in 1927. After a year they changed the name to Parker's Garage.
Roger Parker, Dale's son, came to the business in 1963. He had grown up with the business, and developed a strong interest in repair and service work. "I was never pushed into it," he says. "I just loved the work."
Roger bought their current building on Main St. in 1977. A year later, Roger's son Dave came to work part-time at the service station. At the time Dave was already quite interested in the business. He was going to school for machine work, and getting in a few hours here and there between classes. Dave has been with the business full-time since 1980.
In 1994, Roger closed the business down. Dave couldn't stay away for long, however, and reopened the business under the name Quality Quick Lube in 1996.
Roger, too, seems to not be quite able to give up this kind of work completely. "I'll do anything to stay busy," he says. He just finished construction of a helicopter, and has done work on WWII aircraft as well. "Aircraft have always been my first love," Roger says.
People were happy to see the business return in '96. "A lot of old, faithful customers came back when David reopened," Roger says.
Dave feels that much of this is due to the good service people received over the years. "The name was already well-known," says Dave. "It's been a good, reputable name since the very beginning."
Dave remembers the time when customers' faith lay not in him, but in his father. "People would come in and want to deal just with dad," Dave says. "At first it offended me, until he explained it to me."
"At the time," he continues, "I didn't understand that it wasn't an insult to me but a compliment to him. They trusted his knowledge."
Now Dave has over 20 years of experience, and this has gained him the trust of his father's former customers, and many new ones as well. He has his father to thank for the experience, and the friendly, straight-forward manner with which he treats his customers. "He taught me the basics of car work and electronics," Dave says, "but even more importantly, he taught me to always treat people with respect."
Dave may have his father to thank for much of his skill and expertise, but times are changing, and Dave has had to change with them. Hank and Dale Parker would hardly recognize the equipment used at Quality Quick Lube today, much less the cars they work on.
Every 90 days, Dave receives a CD-ROM with updates on every domestic and foreign car. Each edition of the disc may have as much as 5,000 pages worth of information about mechanical problems and their solutions. "If they were in books we'd have to have a whole storage room as big as this garage to store them in," Dave says, sweeping his arm around the room.
"The technology has brought on a completely new aspect to car repair," says Dave.
Dave Parker's roots in this business may go deep, but he's keeping ahead of the times, and keeping his customers ahead as well.
Source: News Journal, August 16, 1973, Centennial Section
Parker's Auto Supply Starts 1927
Parker's Auto Supply has been a continuous business in North Manchester since 1927, though it has gone through several name changes in the process.
William "Hank" and his son Dale Parker opened the Fairground Garage in 1927. The name came from the fact that the old North Manchester Fairground was located just north of the garage.
The original business was a salvage yard, used car lot, gas station, body shop and grocery store.
The North Manchester Fairground was sold only one year after the business was sold and the firm became Parker's Garage and it remained that until it became Parker's Auto Supply in 1971.
Dale's son Roger became a part of the family business in 1962 and he continues to operate it today as part of the third generation in the same location.
The firm expanded into the auto air-conditioning business in 1968 and continues to service and sell air-conditioners, auto glass and other auto parts.
Today the firm serves area gas stations and other auto businesses. Titus Chamberlin covers the area delivering auto parts and John Rautenkranz is the counter salesman.
They, along with Roger, continue to serve the automotive needs of the area.