Ad-Express and Daily Iowegian, Centerville, IA

Local News

July 5, 2012

Graham Mechanical offers new option for heating and cooling

CENTERVILLE — When Vern Graham decided to start his own plumbing, heating and cooling business, he knew the decades spent working in the community would be an asset.

He did not anticipate, however, the outpouring of support he received from business leaders.

“That was so overwhelming and encouraging,” he said.

Graham always planned to own his own business someday, he said. After two decades of working for Pettit Plumbing & Heating, he decided the time was right to strike out on his own and create Graham Mechanical.

Before he even announced he was starting a business, the word got out and he started getting calls.

“Before I was even really ready I had several local business people call and say, ‘Hey, we’d sure like you to help us with this project,’” Graham said.

Graham said another way the business community supported him was when he applied for and received a small business loan from the Appanoose Economic Development Corporation’s Revolving Loan Fund in May.

“I didn’t even know it existed,” he said.

After he learned about the RLF program from other small business owners who had been involved in it, Graham made an appointment with AEDC Director Tod Faris to start the process.

He got even more out of it than he expected when several RLF review committee members spent time counseling him on the financial aspects of small businesses.

“It impressed me that those people would take their time and financial resources and put it back into the community,” Graham said.

He used the loan to purchase required specialty equipment.

“I was working really hard, but I kept dumping the money back in the company. After a time, that ties up your personal finances,” Graham said. “The loan enabled me to buy those required specialty tools and really give me a stronghold to start showing better profit margins.”

When temperatures rose the week of June 18, Graham found himself working 12 to 14 hours a day responding to cooling-related calls. He prioritized households with small children or the elderly and hired temporary help to get to all the customers.

“You’re just happy to be able to help when it’s hot like that,” he said.

Though Graham relies on temporary help now, he said as soon as he is able he hopes to hire a crew of employees.

Graham has been living in the community for about 25 years. His wife, Lori, was born and raised in this area, and they moved here after they got married. They have two sons, Chris Graham, a software engineer and recent graduate of the University of Iowa, and Cody Graham, a senior at the University of Iowa.

Graham has a master’s license in plumbing and heating from the state. He said he spends most of his day repairing and maintaining previously installed equipment, but he is also able to purchase and install equipment. He offers a 10 percent discount on work for non-profit organizations like schools and churches.

He also offers 24-hour emergency service and can be reached at (641) 895-2852.

Graham said he is committed to being available when his customers need him.

“In all of my ads I put in there that we’re honest, fair and dependable, and that’s not just words,” he said. “If there is going to be any long-term success, you have to abide by that.”

Text Only
Local News
  • School board reviews legislative priorities The Centerville School Board met for a regular meeting Monday, July 14, welcoming new member Steve Hoch, who replaced Tom Lange after his resignation.High School band director Jim DePrizio approached the board to see if the Band Boosters could receiv

    July 22, 2014

  • A.C. history by Enfys McMurry © 2014 Enfys McMurry All rights reserved.July 23,1920-1926: For some people, the changing role of women in this time, was leading to the breakdown of the family. The "Divorce Rate Is Appalling," said one headline. It was the KKK Southern Iowa America

    July 22, 2014

  • 072214 Medics Skills Photo Local medics advance skills Recently, six EMT’s from Mercy Medical Center advanced their credentials and skill levels to become paramedics.Dan Howington, Brenda Howington, Jeff Devoll, Katy Devoll, Andy Mericle and Jerilyn Inman invested their time over the last 18 months to ob

    July 22, 2014 1 Photo

  • A.C. history by Enfys McMurry © 2014 Enfys McMurry All rights reserved. July 22, 1945: Exline’s L. Jay Johnson, who opened a funeral home on East Maple Street on his return to Centerville from World War 2, survived the U.S. 8th AAF. He won a “Lucky Bastard” award from his fellow airmen on completion of 25 dangerous missi

    July 22, 2014

  • 072214 AC Fair Photo1 Antique tractor display The Lapland Plowboys Antique Tractor Club will be displaying a large selection of antique tractors Monday through Friday at the Appanoose County Fair.

    July 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • Fire protection score improves CENTERVILLE – The Centerville Fire Department recently received word that the community’s rating on Insurance Services Office’s Public Protection Classification survey had improved.The survey in question analyzes the fire suppression services in a co

    July 22, 2014

  • Humble Heroes Foundationhelps soldiers' children CENTERVILLE — Justin Zaputil remembers when Master Sgt. Travis Riddick died. The common reactions didn’t feel right.Mourning and then moving on left something undone. It didn’t seem to accomplish what Zaputil and a handful of others wanted. It didn’t

    July 22, 2014

  • A.C. history by Enfys McMurry © 2014 Enfys McMurry All rights reserved.July 20, 1942-5: As the country geared itself into second World War production, vital raw materials were critically short. Collections of metals, rubber, greases, nylons and silks, paper and rags, even milkwee

    July 21, 2014

  • Street paving project update tonight Nancy Huisman with Hall Engineering is on tonight’s Centerville City Council agenda to deliver an update on the East and West State streets and North 10th Street paving project.The council will set a time and date to again discuss the second reading

    July 21, 2014

  • 072114 Howard Service Photo 2 Hundreds attend Howard graveside services Several hundred men, women and children attended the 11 a.m. Saturday graveside services for Moulton native Staff Sgt. Robert E. “Bobby” Howard at Sunset View Cemetery north of Moulton.Pastor Brian Hargrave officiated. Hargrave talked about why we co

    July 21, 2014 2 Photos

  • Solicitation ordinance at a standstill Solicitation ordinance at a standstill

    The Centerville City Council during a special meeting Thursday at City Hall did not pass the second reading of an ordinance that will modify city code to prevent solicitation of funds on city streets.
    Instead, the council voted 3-2 to ...

    July 20, 2014 1 Photo

  • Graveside services for Staff Sgt. Robert E. Howard Graveside services for Staff Sgt. Robert E. Howard

    Graveside services were held Saturday morning at Sunset View Cemetery just north of Moulton for Staff Sgt. Robert E. Howard.

    July 19, 2014 4 Photos

  • American flags for Robert E. Howard American flags for Robert E. Howard

    At least 200 men, women and children came to the Centerville Fire Department firehouse at 2 p.m. Friday to participate in placing more than 2,000 American flags along the route from Centerville to Sunset View Cemetery just north of Moulton, the place where Moulton native Staff Sgt. Robert E. Howard will be laid to rest Saturday at 11 a.m.

    July 18, 2014 4 Photos

  • KO1_7409.jpg WWII Vet: Coming home after 69 years

    Korina Hurley, 48, of Macon, Mo., said her uncle received a call in 2010 from an independent research team based in Germany concerning U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Robert “Bobby” E. Howard, who was in a plane that was shot down over Germany during World War II. The researchers investigate German sites where American soldiers were known to go missing in action or killed in action during World War II.

    July 18, 2014 2 Photos

  • 071714 Howard Photo Flags at half-staff DES MOINES — Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad has ordered flags to be flown at half-staff in Iowa from 5 p.m. Friday, July 18 until 8 a.m. Monday, July 21, in honor of U.S. Army Staff Sgt. Robert “Bobby” E. Howard, formerly of Moulton.Howard, a 21-year old s

    July 17, 2014 1 Photo

Featured Ads

The Iowegian wants readers to think about the 2014 Appanoose County Fair. It starts Monday and wraps up on Saturday with a demolition derby at 8 p.m. So, the question of the week is, "How many days do you plan to go to the Appanoose County Fair?

A. I plan to attend all six days.
B. I plan to attend five days.
C. I plan to attend four days.
D. I plan to attend three days.
E. I plan to attend two days.
F. I plan to attend one day.
G. I do not plan to go to the fair this year.
     View Results
Iowegian on Facebook