Fresno lawnmower business closes down after 45 years

FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- A Fresno business that's helped homeowners keep their lawns looking good closed its doors after more than four decades of service on Friday.

Pinedale Lawnmower Center was one of those places where you could buy new equipment, get old equipment repaired and pick up hard-to-find parts.

When Pinedale Lawnmower Center opened 45 years ago, some thought Manuel Rodriguez was crazy to start a business in a remote part of town.

"The way I figured, someway, somehow, the city will grow and if it grows it will grow this side," he says.

Some customers never picked up their trimmers and lawnmowers even after countless calls. The 79-year-old Rodriguez has been logging long hours to clear out and even donate equipment as he prepares for retirement.

"What I miss about here is the customers. The beautiful people," he says.

He immigrated from Mexico in 1968 in search of the American dream.

"When I started business, I really didn't know too much English so my customers were my teachers that teach me really how to express myself."

A better life for him and his wife Alice and two kids was the goal. College was mandatory for them and the grandkids who came later.

"You feel so much in love with those experience, every time I look it up it's makes me a little bit sentimental."

The front office which once showcased the newest models also served as a place for the grandkids to play.

Rodriguez has fixed carburetor problems and provided jobs for neighbors in Calwa.

He has sold the shop but won't be far. He lives across the street.

"For me to go through here again my heart will start pumping a little big because I'll be missing it."

And customers will miss his personal touch.
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