Earlier this year, I spent time with Cornwell Tools dealer Herman Olds in San Antonio, Texas. I was saddened to find out last month that Herman died August 7 from a stroke. Unfortunately, our August issue that featured Herman as the cover profile was already printed. So, in place of my regular column, is this "In Memoriam" to a distributor you learned about last issue.
I spent the better part of a day on the truck with him, taking pictures and talking about his career, his route, Cornwell, his family and more. Much more. Herman was definitely a talker, but he didn't fill empty spaces with words. He talked about things that mattered, like family, his business, my business, religion and more, but without standing on a soapbox. He wanted to share conversation with someone new, and I felt by the end of the day that Herman cared about me and that it was a day that mattered to him.
I know that Herman's conversation and advice and caring mattered to me.
My condolences go to the Olds family and Cornwell Tools for their loss.
- Brendan Dooley, editor
Herman was my No. 1 hitter. He wanted to be a Top 10 dealer, and made sure he was destined to do it. He was on pace for it this year, and was near No. 15 when he got sick. Hermand was always a Top 30 dealer, and was always very motivated.
When he wanted something, he went and got it. When he started selling tools, he had found his forte.
- Jim Ingram, Cornwell Tools District Manager
Herman Worth Olds III
9-6-1957 to 8-7-2010
Herman grew up in Copperas Cove, Texas. After graduation in 1975, he went to work for Bay Long Oldsmobile in Killeen where he worked as a mechanic and received several certifications for Honda when it became Cleo Bay Honda. Herman met the love of his life on April 7, 1978, and married her (Janie Lynn Jernigan) on July 1, 1978. They were blessed with sons, Joshua Aaron, Jeremiah Jernigan and Jacob Ellis. Herman was a mechanic for several Honda dealerships throughout Texas until finally fullfilling his lifetime dream of becoming a tool distributor on July 1, 2005. He made the Top 100 salesmen in the nation in his first partial year as a Cornwell Distributor.
Herman leaves behind his parents Hope and Herman Worth Olds Jr.; his wife, Janie; his sons Joshua Aaron (CJ) of Lampasas; Jeremiah Jernigan (Destiny) currently deployed to Afghanistan; and Jacob Ellis; his grandchildren Elizabeth, Joshua, Braeton and Cheyenne; and his extended family of nieces, nephews, in-laws and Cornwell dealers.
A celebration of Herman’s life was held in San Antonio on Aug. 12, 2010.