BY JACLYN ROSE –
E & W Marine has been in business officially for three and a half years, but has been developing in the hearts and minds of Jamie and Lorene White since they were married, 22 years ago. Jamie, an avid and skilled bass fisherman, developed an interest in boats around that time, but pursued it only as a hobby until eight years ago. “Over time my hobby has just grown into something more. I’ve always been a mechanic, from airplanes to ATVs to boats; I’ve always wanted to work on toys.”
E & W Marine is a home based business located in Yocana, Arkansas on Polk Road 661, where they hope to have their shop constructed by this summer. It is a business that has family as the center, with Jamie doing most of the labor and Lorene managing the office. Their hope is to turn this in to a heritage for their daughters: Alissa, a 19 year old student ant Rich Mountain Community College and Haley, a junior at Mena High School. “We hope to turn this into a legacy for our children one day. We want them to know that they can do what they want: go to college and be what they want to be, and then come home one day and have this business to take over,” Jamie explained.
Jamie and Lorene stay busy, starting at the end of February and beginning of March, helping their customers by de-winterizing their boats and performing their annual services, making sure it is up to par for the entire summer. In September and October they begin the process of winterizing their customer’s boats and preparing them for proper storage through the cold months. E & W Marine also does everything from major repair on inboards and outboards to recovery, they do small engine repair and want their customers to know they can call them any time, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, to do a service or to assist them if they are stranded. “Many of our customers have been with us since before our business actually began. They have moved with us and stayed with us and they are loyal. They are the best customers and they know they can call us at any time to help them, and they do,” Jamie said with a laugh, “My cell phone [479.243.3890] is my work phone so I can be reached at any time.”
“We started this business to help people and to keep our customers from being forced to drive to Hot Springs, Fort Smith or Mt. Ida to have their boat repaired,” Lorene explained. “We want to help bring business back home.” Jamie agreed, “We want to keep as much business in Polk County as we can, so it can help build and grow this area.” Jamie works primarily alone but calls in his good buddy, Doug Kirby on big jobs. “Doug is such a good man and a good friend. I can’t thank him enough; he’s always been there when I need him and is such a big help.”
The Whites are members of The Crossing and firmly believe their faith is the basis for everything they do. “We thank God for everything: our marriage, our business, without Him none of this would be possible. I always say, I’m a back row Baptist, but I’ve never been able to hide from The Lord. We are thankful for great friends, like David and LeAnn Dilbeck, who have encouraged us so much lately in our walk with the Lord. God has used friendships like that to help move us forward in our lives and our business,” Jamie explained.