Indiana Township garage a family affair for 74 years

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A few brothers are continuing the legacy of their relatives-owned automotive repair small business in Indiana Township.

Kepple’s Garage, co-owned by Wilbur, Howard and Chuck Kepple, celebrates 74 decades of fixing vehicles and gear this year.

The garage, launched by their late parents, Edna and John Kepple, opened in 1948.

“I acquired how to experience a tricycle in this place,” Wilbur Kepple reported of escalating up performing together with his father and brothers.

Kepple’s repairs classic, domestic and imported cars, along with tractors, trucks and machinery, these kinds of as stump grinders.

The Kepples lived on the 3 acres that encompass the garage, and Wilbur, 64, still lives in his childhood house, found guiding the small business.

“I’ve lived 64 yrs of my lifestyle right here,” mentioned Wilbur.

Chuck, 58, and Howard, 71, stay close by in West Deer.

The brothers are all Fox Chapel Spot Substantial Faculty graduates.

They tout a organization philosophy inherited from their late father.

“We’re sincere,” the brothers claimed. “We only fix what requirements to be mounted.”

Wilbur Kepple claimed he gravitates towards repairing classic vehicles and tractors.

“I like the aged things, considering the fact that I’m aged,” he mentioned.

A manure spreader from the 1890s is just a single of 1000’s of repairs built onsite above the a long time.

“We labored on a whole lot of farm tools then simply because it was so rural. We did a great deal of tractors, and we even labored on lawnmowers. Father and my brothers—we never went to school to study how to be mechanics. It was master-as-we-go,” Howard Kepple said.

The initial garage was assumed to have been a modest blacksmith’s shop, Howard claimed.

“Dad taught us to get the job done, get money, and reinvest it into the business enterprise, and it stored rising. We’ve hardly ever, ever marketed,” Howard Kepple said.

Kepple’s mechanic Chris Cox, 51, of Indianola, has labored at the garage for a few years and has aided to repair cars, trucks, tractors and a lot more.

“There’s a little something distinctive to operate on each day,” Cox claimed.

Joyce Hanz | Tribune-Evaluate

Kepple’s Garage co-proprietors and brothers Chuck and Wilbur Kepple stant following to a 1946 Chevy truck in for repairs at their family members-owned and operated business in Indiana Township. Kepple’s was founded in 1948 by their dad and mom, John and Edna Kepple.

 

The brothers claimed their prospects count on them to deliver many years of awareness about correcting things.

Wilbur reported he attempted to pursue other occupations, like a stint in the steel business and as a accredited welder, but he returned to the family small business.

Kepple’s the moment operated as a Sinclair and afterwards, a Texaco full-support fuel station, until eventually 1981.

Now, the garage occupies 9,000 sq. toes and has numerous in excess of-sized bays.

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Joyce Hanz | Tribune-Critique

Chuck Kepple checks on a tractor in for repairs June 14 at Kepple’s Garage in Indiana Township. Kepple’s Garage has been spouse and children owned and operated for 74 decades.

 

Howard mentioned when their father was drafted into the Military Air Pressure correct before Globe War II, he still left his mechanic hand tools with a relative for safekeeping.

When John Kepple returned from abroad in 1945, the resources experienced been bought.

“My father experienced to acquire new resources, and it was his daily life desire. He worked there till he died,” Howard Kepple reported.

Edna dealt with the secretarial duties at Kepple’s and was acknowledged for her cooking and baking.

“She produced a cherry custard pie that was pretty special. It was my beloved,” Howard Kepple mentioned.

Shoppers frequently were greeted by the scent of handmade meals when they visited the garage.

Andrew Bogolin, 29, of Pittsburgh is a longtime shopper who insists on bringing his car there for repairs.

“We see the very same faces every single time. They converse us by way of what’s heading on, and they are straightforward,” Bogolin mentioned.

Chuck recalled arriving residence following elementary university and pumping fuel until eventually 9 p.m., 7 days a week.

“It was pleasurable, but it was expected. It was a way of lifestyle,” Chuck Kepple reported. He by no means regarded leaving the family enterprise.

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Courtesy of Howard Kepple

A photograph of Kepple’s founders Edna and John Kepple taken in 1943.

 

“Ever since I was a child I knew I’d be right here,” he claimed.

“I learned how to operate the business enterprise, perform on cars—all of it,” Chuck Kepple claimed.

Howard Kepple recalled a fond memory from his teenage yrs.

“When I was 13, I uncovered to push by putting the wrecker and support truck into the store at the finish of the day,” he explained.

Joyce Hanz is a Tribune-Review personnel writer. You can contact Joyce by email at [email protected] or via Twitter .



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