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An Office Tale: Reflections on Two Decades of Growth, Brotherhood, and Unfinished Goodbyes

Updated: Jun 28, 2023


For twenty long years, this address has held a special place in my heart. It was a tumultuous period of my life—freshly divorced and with my firstborn son away—I sought solace amidst the familiar faces of coworkers I had met during my early days at Wabash. Stepping into the warehouse, my duties were diverse, ranging from receiving and stocking to pulling, packing, and delivering orders to our local customers. Wednesdays and Thursdays morphed into grueling marathons, stretching from 13 to 15 hours, as we meticulously pulled orders and loaded them onto a flatbed destined for Blaine, Washington, making multiple stops along the way.

Amidst the whirlwind of emotional turmoil, I made a conscious decision to give it my all—to become a better man and escape the clutches of pain that had consumed me in the form of alcohol. It was a desperate attempt to outrun life itself.

One fateful day, as I tugged at a  52-foot piece of aluminum bottom rail, fate intervened. The rail slipped from its perch and came crashing down, slicing through my belly and forearm. Without skipping a beat, I wrapped my wounded arm with a paper towel secured it with box tape, and returned to work. Such was our way of life—a testament to the resilience etched into our very beings, visible through the scars we carry like badges of honor.

Working alongside my band of brothers from Wabash National, who had inherited the illustrious legacy of martec in our industry, was a delight. Days blurred into weeks as we toiled tirelessly, met fascinating individuals, shed tears, and even penned a song or two. Our shared love for music became the soundtrack to our lives, providing solace during the grueling shifts and inspiring us to reach the finish line.

When the sun set on those laborious days, our beers awaited us at Kelly's Tavern in Downey. Many mornings greeted us with the lingering effects of hangovers, as one would expect. And on Fridays, we embarked on a pilgrimage to Steve's BBQ in Whittier, entering through the back door like characters in a scene from "Goodfellas." Oh, how I relished those moments! We would order food and libations, indulging in wild nights that would become the stuff of legends. This ritual became the lifeblood that sustained us for many months on end.

Eventually, I found my calling as a sales representative, a role that beckoned to me during my interactions with colleagues at Wabash. Gone were the days of greasy hands and bloodied cuts, as I embraced a newfound professional persona—respected, brimming with knowledge of our products, and exuding a sense of cleanliness.

In 2007, I sought greener pastures and briefly departed to become an assistant manager at a competitor's firm. Yet destiny had other plans, as I returned three years later, my experience having carved my personality and sculpted me into the West Coast Sales Manager I am today—a role I proudly inhabit, shaping the course of our company's future.

These past thirteen years have been a whirlwind ride, filled with the comings and goings of countless individuals. Year after year, my sales figures soared, earning me multiple commendations for my unwavering dedication. I left an indelible mark on the fabric of our organization, playing a pivotal role in shaping who we have become.

Little did I realize that fateful Tuesday, June 20th, 2023, marked my final steps into that famed office—a space that had witnessed my triumphs and trials, a sanctuary where I poured my heart and soul into my work. Unbeknownst to me, it was to be our last encounter, as we relocated our office, leaving behind a chapter of my life that remained unfinished.

The bittersweet truth is that I never got the chance to bid farewell to the place that had been my second home for two decades. The memories and experiences accumulated within those walls now resonate within me, a mix of nostalgia and longing for the camaraderie we shared. Yet, as I embark on this new chapter, I carry with me the invaluable lessons learned, the growth that blossomed, and the unwavering determination to continue my journey.

In the tapestry of life, some threads are woven tighter than others, leaving us with a sense of longing for the closure we never received. But as I leave behind that address, I embrace the unknown, fueled by the knowledge that within those walls, I discovered resilience, formed unbreakable bonds, and forged a path toward personal and professional fulfillment.

Goodbye, 9080 Rosecrans. You may be just a physical space, but within your confines, you harbored the stories and dreams of countless souls. As I bid you farewell, I carry the weight of unfinished goodbyes, yet I am grateful for the memories that have shaped me into the person I am today. May the echoes of laughter, tears, and hard work reverberate within your walls, forever etched in the tapestry of my life's journey.

And so, with a heart filled with gratitude and a spirit ignited by the promise of new beginnings, I step into the unknown, ready to pen the next chapter of my story, guided by the resilience and lessons learned within those  walls. The time has come to turn the page and embrace the unwritten future that lies ahead.


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1 Comment

Erminda Dominguez
Erminda Dominguez
Jun 26, 2023

Wow!! I didn’t know all that about your life there. Loved reading about it and we are so proud of you.

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