Mr. Vigil was drafted for the Korean War as a young man. He went to radio school and was sent to Korea for a 2-year tour. He eventually led a platoon and was such a talented radio man that his tour was extended for an additional year.
When he returned from Korea in 1953, he got a call from a friend who had served with him, whose dad was in need of a plumber. Mr. Vigil didn’t have any plumbing training, but his friend – who had cared for him when he was injured – needed a favor. And the rest, as they say, is history.
Mr. Vigil received training as a plumber on the GI Bill. In this program, he was hired by a company and paid during his training. After only a few days at the training school, his instructor approached him with the news that his boss needed him to go in the field immediately. He stayed with the company for 10 years, leaning much along the way.
When his boss decided to relocate, Mr. Vigil stayed put. He was raising 5 kids on his own and decided to strike out and open his own business. Thanks to his connections with builders, who hired him to plumb their new home construction, the business flourished. In recent years, the business has transitioned from laying plumbing systems to a focus on drain cleaning.
His friendships in the local community have paid off. He even has a trade-off relationship with a printer in town. He does all her plumbing, and she prints all his business materials.
Once on a cleaning job, a 20-foot limb was pulled from a line. On another job, a customer’s sewer was clogged. It turns out her daughters had been flushing feminine products down the toilet! She was glad for the simple fix, but not happy with her daughters.
Mr. Vigil says the best advice he ever received was, “Keep your nose clean. Don’t try to hurry or you’ll mess things up.” He always performed each job deliberately and precisely. In fact, he was required to carry $2 million in bonds as a plumber, but he had to use it once. He was careful to perform every task slowly and with care.
Mr. Vigil is a loyal Spartan Tool customer, and he has a great relationship with his Territory Manager, Jason Robey. He says that on more than one occasion, Jason has come at his request to help with his equipment.
We are honored to have Sam Vigil as part of the Spartan Tool team. He has no plans to retire and is looking forward to traveling, especially an all-expense paid trip to Washington, DC with the American Legion for an Honor Flight. His daughter has urged him to take lots of pictures, but Sam says, “I’m a plumber, not a cameraman!”
Spartan Tool thanks you, Sam, for your service to your country and your community!