The amazing transformation of Young’s Auto & Salvage

Mike Bellmore, Features Editor
Tee Young and his wife, Joni, are transforming Young's Auto and Salvage into several new businesses.

When Tee Young returned to Young’s Auto Parts and Salvage just months ago, he literally had to crawl over vehicles to gain access.

However, since last August, Young and his wife, Joni, have transformed the place into one that few would even recognize these days.

An eyesore on the east edge of town, it now encompasses three fledgling businesses and has undergone a basic housecleaning.

Young and his wife had been in Arizona for the past 15 years working in the casino and entertainment business.

“We bought a little casino and a bar, but it didn’t work out,” Young says. “And Shorty (his dad) wanted me back here.”

“Dad got old and couldn’t clean the place up, so we started some things and hopefully it will work.”

The Youngs arrived back in their home town last August and immediately began their quest to clean house.

They’ve basically been limited to two months of outdoor work thus far, and there are still some recyclables remaining.

But there is now an Itasca Truck Repair, Brokerage and Truck Company on the premises, Heustis Auto Repair, recently opened by Lake Region State College student Chris Heustis, and American Global Recycling, operated by the Youngs.

“We’re going to start with metals, plastics, cardboard and aluminum cans,” adds Young. “We want to progress to the point where we can do anything.”

Young admits the transformation of his former family business is still a work in progress and not completed yet.

One plan, still on the backburner, is the addition of a Go-Kart track, possibly this summer.

The Young family has a strong tradition in car racing, so that would appear to be a “nice fit” and compliment some of Young’s other plans.

Joni, his wife, is excited too.

“Recycling is the way the world is going, so we certainly hope we can make a go of it,” she stated. “It seems to be a real fit with the land out here and some of the things we’re doing.”

Young conceeded that getting such a venture off the ground this time of the year has not been an easy task.

But he’s focused on making the location as clean and neat as possible with a park-like atmosphere.

Still more buildings remain to be fixed, cleaned and may even be expanded in the future.