Let me tell you the story of Glenn. I had to go to a funeral yesterday up by Green Bay, Wisconsin. As it was a long drive I spent the night in La Crosse and then jumped on the road about 5:30am. About 6am I started to hear a slight grind in my left front tire, by 6:30am it had gotten a little louder and by 7am it sounded like a metal on metal crime!. I was almost sure the wheel bearing was going out. As I was cutting across Wisconsin I was taking back roads and knew that I was going to be in the middle of no where and was going to have to stop. About that time I pulled into Wild Rose, Wisconsin and saw a little store / auto service garage. It was a little after 7am when I walked in HOPING someone would be there to help.
As I walked in an older gentlemen was putting oil on a shelf as I stupidly asked him “do you work here”? (Of course he worked there….random people don’t just walk into stores and stock shelves). He said he did and asked what was wrong. I told him about the noise and he noticed that I was all dressed up and asked where I was off too? I told him I was from Iowa on my way to a funeral. He paused and said “pull it around back”.
He got it up on the lift and confirmed it was the wheel bearing. He asked how much further I had to go and I told him 70 miles or so. He told me no way was it going to make it that far. I asked if they could fix it and he said yes but it will be a few hours. I asked if there was a place to rent a car at and being a small town of 725 people, there was nothing. I must have looked pretty stressed out at this time because Glenn then reached into his pocket, pulled out the keys to HIS own vehicle and said “Take my truck. Fill it up with gas, don’t turn on the emergency lights and get going.” “She’ll do 120mph if you need it to” with a smile on his face. He was giving his own keys to a stranger that he met just TEN MINUTES before this. Needless to say I used his truck pictured below with tools and split wood in the back to get to the funeral and back to Wild Rose.
We sat and talked for a while when I got back as I thanked him and he told me more about himself. Glenn…the 74 year old mechanic with a grip of steel turned a terrible day into a good one with a great lesson…”just be kind and help if you can”. If you are ever up by Wild Rose, Wisconsin stop into Lauritzen Sport Shop and say hi to Glenn in the garage.
Credit: Todd Steinkamp