HOULKA – Ken Westmoreland began working at his father’s store in 1974 and quickly learned getting the right part and the right tool in the hand of the customer who needs it is what the business is all about.
Westmoreland Auto Supply opened in January 1940 when David Westmoreland — Ken’s father – brought the business to Houlka and in a day and age when people didn’t go far from their home or farm to buy parts and tools.
“In my father’s day 80-percent of his business came from agriculture and about 15-percent was automotive parts and supplies,” said Ken Westmoreland. “That has switched and more than 80 percent of my business is now auto related and the rest is ag related.”
Westmoreland bought the business from his father in 1981. He smiles when he says he has never wanted to do anything else.
And while the market, technology and business has changed a lot, Westmoreland said quality customer service is still a cornerstone of his business philosophy.
“We know the people in this community and have been here a long time,” said Westmoreland. “I’ve still got families who did business with my dad. They count on us and we count on them.”
Westmoreland Auto Supply is a NAPA parts and tool house and carries a large inventory of car parts and tools.
“We also carry a full line of belts, hoses and fluids from anti-freeze and oil to additives and transmission fluids,” said Westmoreland. “We also carry the items to clean and take care of your car or truck.”
And folks might be surprised by the wide selection offered in the store on the south side of the square in downtown Houlka.
“What we don’t have in the store can be ordered,” said Westmoreland. “We do everything we can to get your business, except put the part on.”
And Westmoreland offers credit to approved customers.
“I don’t know why people want to go out of town to buy tools at the big stores, but they do it all the time,” said Westmoreland. “We offer the same items and I am the first to say our prices are competitive.”
Like all hometown businesses, Westmoreland just urges people to shop with him first.
“I have the best prices on air compressors and all I ask is people come in and see what I have,” said Westmoreland. “When you take your dollars out of Houlka, you hurt your community.”
Westmoreland Auto Supply has been a landmark in Houlka for more than 70 years and the downtown business is open daily to serve its customers and community.
Westmoreland Auto Supply
Owner: Ken Westmoreland
Location: 103 Fifth Avenue, Houlka
Hours: 7 a.m. to 5 p.m., Mon.-Fri., 7 a.m. to noon Sat.
Local Focus is a regular business feature of the Chickasaw Journal. Locally owned businesses wanting to be included in Local Focus should call the Chickasaw Journal at 456-3771.