Keith, 12, showing livestock with 4H at the Marion County Fair
When Don Wiley found and purchased a medicine shop franchise in 1982, he had three location choices: Mt. Vernon, Chillicothe and Marion. He chose Marion. Don attended Pharmacy School at Mercer in Atlanta. Then he worked at an independent pharmacy for a few years before finding the franchise opportunity. “When we moved to Marion, we didn’t know a soul,” said Don.
In 2004, Keith opened Precision Auto, “The first year was hard. It wasn’t easy making ends meet or deciding which bills to pay when, but I knew I couldn’t quit. I’d work all day and through the night just to keep the lights on.” Precision Auto & Towing was open for 3 months when Keith was presented with the opportunity to move the business to its current location. From day one, Precision Auto offered everything from auto repair to emergency towing. As his loyal customer base grew, so did Keith’s number of employees.
Keith received a community award at the Popcorn Festival
Starting the business by himself, Precision Auto now employs eight people. Keith credits his success to a loyal small town, “I owe everything to this community. I have the best employees and the best customers. It can be hard to find a good, trustworthy mechanic. Fortunately, my friends and neighbors have faith in us to take care of their vehicles.” Business continued to grow through the recession, as the poor economic climate led to more people fixing what they had, instead of buying a new car.
Over time, the auto repair industry has changed. Today’s cars rely on powerful computers and have more electrical components. Precision Auto has had to diversify and expand their diagnostic and electronic department. Keith has shifted the business to focus less on towing, and more on training employees to better serve the community’s auto repair needs. When asked why a career in auto repair, Keith stated, “I love a challenge and finding the right solution” Averaging anywhere from 25-40 cars per day, every car that leaves the shop carries his name and reputation. Keith has become a trusted face in the Marion community, “My boys won’t run into the grocery store with me because I am constantly stopped by my customers and friends.” One of Keith’s most loyal customers has a 1972 Buick Grand Sport. He appreciates Keith’s attention to detail, “Keith is the only mechanic I let near my classic car. When I broke down at a show in Southern Ohio, my nerves were settled when Keith drove 100 miles one way to tow us home. Keith is more than my mechanic, he’s a trusted friend.”
Keith has served on the Marion Fair Board for the past 28 years. Pictured here with Mayor Jack Kellogg
As he celebrates 15 years in business, Keith is excited to move forward with plans to expand the shop. Purchasing the current building and adjacent property to offer more parking, larger facilities, and ultimately a better customer experience. Whether your car needs an oil change, tire rotation, or a new transmission, Keith and the team at Precision Auto will treat you right. You can find them at 1239 Mt Vernon Ave, or give them a call at 740.387.0501