Real Stories From Life at a Dealership

People are the experience

Chicken Kid

Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”


 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 



Reflecting from my office across the dealership at Sierra Motors in Jamestown I ofton wonder what little things in my life took place to lead me to become a GM.

I’m sure with a smile in my heart this is one of them.

 We all have experienced disappointment at some point(s) in our lives. Friends, relatives, parents or children, not to mention jobs, athletic endeavors and relationships, all have their pitfalls. But do you remember your first disappointment?


As I grew up my Dad set a great example by having an excellent work ethic. He was never unemployed and always provided for our family. In retrospect, I always knew that my Father was very fortunate to work for a good man. Things were different back in the 60’s. Guys that worked together seemed to do family things together.


My dad’s Boss was Jim. It seemed to me as a kid that Jim was family. My Dad went and spent everyday with him at work and our families did things together on evenings and weekends. I even called him “Uncle Jim”. It never crossed my mind as a child that it was any other way.


I walked out of Jim’s front door, to go into his garage, where he and my Father were working on some project together. I heard Jim say to my Dad “I sure like it when Eric calls me Uncle Jim”. My five year old mind and body froze. I couldn’t even think of all of the ramifications of that statement.


On the way home, I asked my Dad, “Why did Jim say that he like me calling him Uncle Jim… isn’t he”? In my mind I addressed all of my Uncles and Aunts in the same manner. Weather it was Uncle Bill or Aunt Pat, it was their relationship followed by their first name. Then the bomb dropped. My Father told me, “He’s not really your uncle you just call him that.”


I couldn’t believe it. I had been duped. I knew that I would never call him Uncle Jim ever again. I was so disappointed!


I must have gotten over it soon though, as I happily spent time with Jim over the years. We did things like fishing together. When I was having trouble learning to water-ski he yelled out from the boat, “Ride it like a skate board” and I did. My back foot was sideways for the first summer of skiing. For some odd reason, he called me “Chicken Kid” and I called him “Chicken Man”. He still influences me to this day.


But, I really thought he was my Uncle. And at the end of the day it’s not blood it’s the heart. I love you uncle Jim…I mean chicken man…




May 29, 2009 Posted by | dad, eric prothro, love, sierra motors, uncle | , , , , | 2 Comments


Sierra Motors        “One Low Price, Plain and Simple…ALWAYS !”


 CALL TODAY  @800.571.0275 




“Who is the old guy that hangs out around here?” I asked. “That’s Sarge, He’s the eyes and ears of the owner, watch it”, was the common reply. I was new in the car business, but, a guy who watches and tells didn’t seem right to me. I didn’t know anything about the guy except that he was old, short and I didn’t trust him. So I made a point of making my position known to him.


I was in a small used car office when Sarge walked in. I don’t even remember what I said to him other than something to piss him off. Apparently this time it did. No sooner did the words leave my lips than Sarge jumped over the desk and put me up against the wall. He grabbed my necktie and spun it around as to restrict my airway. This old, short, retired Sergeant was in the middle of calling me a “smart ass” when I calmly asked him to let me go. I learned that strength is better displayed through endurance then fighting back.


Over the next 20 years I learned a lot more from Sarge. He was a non-commissioned pilot in WWII. He flew supplies to Patton. He dropped Para-troopers into battle. Sarge landed in North Africa and was captured by Rommel. He was a Prisoner of War. Marching through the snow going into Germany he escaped. His description of hiding in French sewers has forever affected any possible positive thoughts of the French and the smell of their food. Sarge talked about getting smuggled across the English Channel in a fishing boat. He said that he spent three weeks drinking before reporting back to duty.


When describing the flack burst that left him peppered with shrapnel, shredded the cockpit of his Bomber and killed his co-pilot, He said “After a couple of minutes you realize that what you feel, running warm down your leg, must not be piss”. Bleeding, he landed that plane.



Sarges told me with tears in his eyes, that he would much rather tell me of the women that he knew and the alcohol he drank, instead of the friends that he lost.


It was a privilege to have learned respect from my friend. I still can’t believe that he jumped over that desk. But I know I’m better for it. Thanks you old goat, for allowing me to learn self worth in a common moment, in a small used car office.



May 29, 2009 Posted by | b-25, jamestown, sarge, sierra motors, used car office | , , , , | Leave a comment