Nathaniel Marshall: American Plumber Stories

Read his American Plumber story!
How did you get started in the plumbing trade?
I had been working a customer service job at a property management company for 18 months when I decided that I, a high school graduate, wanted to do something more that didn’t require shouldering a debilitating amount of student loan debt for the next three decades. I looked into the trades and found that I really believed in the idea of plumbing: protecting the health of the nation, purifying and providing clean water, repairing and maintaining the systems that allowed these to happen, and more. Within weeks I had been introduced to and interviewed with the owner of a small plumbing business and my trade career had begun!
What do you like most about your work as a plumber?
I see my role as a plumber, at least in the context of residential service and repair, as one of a mediator: my customer is now the occupant of a home which has rebelled against them and I am there to restore the peace between the two. I like bringing order in the home, ease to the customer, and leaving a sense of wholeness behind me. Turning wrenches and diagnosing funny smells and fixing leaky pipes are how I accomplish this. feeling.
What advice do you have for the younger generation entering the plumbing trade? 
The trades are not a quick study. To work in a trade is to engage every facet of your being: your body, of course, but less thought of are your mental, moral, and (I would say) your spiritual faculties. Your hands turn wrenches; your mind must process and synthesize a ton of information to make a correct diagnosis; your patience will be tested by stubborn situations and your compassion by anxious customers. Trade work done with excellence requires all of you and no less.

Plumbing isn’t something one can simply read a book about and watch a YouTube video to do well. It requires years of training, years of discipline, years of sweat and blood and effort—stick with it! Be patient. Don’t pass judgment on yourself when you fail but learn from it. This work is unspeakably important and society will quite literally crumble without people like you dedicating themselves to holding it together.

1 comment

  • Joanna Huenergardt

    I have known Nathaniel now for some years. He married my granddaughter. Nathaniel has always been a very passionate and dedicated young man about any thing he has journeyed into! He loves a challenge and won’t give up on it. I am very proud of him! Thank You Nathaniel for your faithful Service!!

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