Cory Howard is taking a leap of faith in opening his own auto repair shop on North Hamilton Street in Spokane.
He is seeking to follow in the footsteps of his late father, Ron Howard, who ran Save More Automotive until his untimely death from a heart attack in 2012.
Cory Howard, who grew up around his dad’s business, wants to recreate the success his father had at his newly opened shop at 2605 N. Hamilton St.
“We are exactly alike,” he said of his father. “It’s just how I grew up.”
The new Save More Automotive offers a full line of repair service from routine maintenance to engine rebuilds.
Cory Howard, who lives in Post Falls, is a certified master mechanic with the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence. He spent the past two years working at a Toyota dealership. Before that, he had his own repair shop in Coeur d’Alene.
His sense of loyalty to his father led him to take a chance on opening a new repair shop on the North Side with little funding and a lot of desire, just like his father did in 1990.
“With the honesty, integrity, and drive passed down from my father I will follow in his footsteps to build back up a business that I can someday pass down to my son,” he said in an email.
He said a lot of vehicle owners want an independent repair shop, which can often save them money over the cost of work at larger shops and dealerships.
“There are a lot of independent shops that provide a quality service,” he said.
For now, Howard is working on his own. He hopes to get the business to grow enough that he can hire other mechanics.
Howard said his father started his shop at Francis Avenue and Nevada Street in 1990 with little in the way of investment. He believes that if his father could be successful, he can, too.
His father was a bass guitarist for a local band, “Karma’s Circle.” He suffered a heart attack during a performance with the band, and never regained consciousness.
As a result of unexpected medical bills, the family was unable to save the business or his father’s other assets, leaving Cory Howard with no choice but to start from scratch in his own business, he said.
Cory Howard has taken his dad’s place in the band. He has a 4-year-old son, Wyatt, who is the same age he was when his dad opened the shop at Francis and Nevada.
“My dad’s shop is where I learned my love for tools, nuts and bolts and all things automotive. It’s where I was crafted into the man I am today,” he said.
“We have a long road in front of us, but we are excited for the days ahead,” he said.
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