Pom Arleau celebrates 90 years of Truckin'

90 years of trucking with integrity

EAST WENATCHEE -- Ninety years ago, 6'3" 300-pound Henry Pom Arleau came from Quebec, Canada and founded the original iteration of Pom-Arleau Transfer & Storage Corp. in Monitor in 1928. Now his grandson Terry is at the helm and Pom-Arleau has since moved to East Wenatchee, but the 56-year industry veteran doesn't show his age (73) and has a memory to be envied.
One thing Terry remembers from back-in-the-day is when his dad Harold would drive a truck through the early alleyways of Wenatchee to gather cardboard boxes.
"I would throw them in the truck as my dad would slowly drive by," he said. "We would then use the boxes to pack our moving customers' belongings."
Terry also remembers legendary stories about his huge granddad.
"He could put a strap on his back and lift a piano and carry it to the truck by himself," Terry said in awe.
Pom Arleau is a big fan of loyalty and when it comes to that he is quick to point to two particular people in the company: Co-owner and 15-year "friend of the family" Mike Marsh, whom he credits for the continued healthy bottom line of Pom-Arleau Transfer, and Office Manager Donna Head, an employee at the firm for 46 years.
"She knows about everything there is to know," marveled Terry. Donna related one story where she was at the hospital and about to give birth when she received a phone call from a desperate coworker asking where a particular file was.
The coworker found the file, she had the baby and the gravy train kept rolling along. For 50 years the company was associated with Global Van Lines, but is now with Wheaton World Wide Moving. For more information call Donna at Pom Arleau, 509-886-7667 or visit them at 5518 Enterprise Drive in East Wenatchee.
Pom Arleau gives 36-year-old Marsh credit for getting new customers and accepting the responsibility of keeping the company going strong 24/7.
Marsh is in charge of sales and marketing and also sports "one of the best work ethics I have ever seen," said Terry.
"He works seven days a week if he has to and never squawks about it," said Terry.
One of the most exciting adventures in moving occurred a while back when Alcoa wanted Pom Arleau to remove a 15,000 pound safe from a second floor so it could be surplussed.
After great peril and travail, the massive safe finally was loaded onto a truck. It was so heavy as to cause the front wheels of the truck to come off the ground. It was moved successfully with some counterbalancing.
Terry has a deep and abiding respect for his profession and wants amateur movers to understand a thing or two: "Skin grows back," he said, referring to a choice of getting a bruise on your hands or causing damage to a clients property.
"No damaged goods," remembers Terry. That was one company motto. The other professional advice?
"Furniture moving is an art form," he said, "it isn't just a matter of throwing things into a truck."
Almost as important as responsibility for not breaking things is the idea of making and nurturing relationships in the community.
Terry firmly believes in keeping good relations, networking and having a positive attitude.
"People trust us with a lifetime of their valuable possessions and we owe it to them to treat their goods with respect."
The Air Force veteran also wants everyone to understand the main driving force behind the company's success over the last 90 years.
"Integrity. If you don't have integrity then you shouldn't be in business."

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