DELAWARE COUNTY, Ohio (WCMH) – For most people, navigating the COVID-19 pandemic has been like solving a jigsaw puzzle.
For Josh Scheutzow, navigating family life and a family business before the pandemic helped this carpenter’s son make the pieces fit.
As the birds chirp, the dogs bark, and the chickens cluck on a backroad homestead in Delaware County, there is peace.
Until you walk in the back shed and the buzzsaw wails.
“My father’s a carpenter, my grandfather’s a carpenter, my great-grandfather is a carpenter,” Scheutzow, the founder and owner of A Carpenter’s Son, said.
His lot appeared to be cast, but Scheutzow was working in commercial construction when the need for something on the side came up.
“My greatest fear when Lee was sick was that he wouldn’t survive,” Josh’s wife, Laura Scheutzow, recalls of the time her son was hospitalized.
Josh and Laura’s second son survived having his small intestine removed when he was four months old.
They then decided to adopt a third son and needed $30,000 to pay for it.
“We sold $30,000 worth of cutting boards in a few months,” Josh said, still struggling to believe it.
A Carpenter’s Son cutting boards — in the shape of Ohio.
When Laura got pregnant with their fourth son, both the family and the new business were booming.
“We got hired by the Columbus Crew to build some pieces for the new experience center,” Josh remembers.
A Carpenter’s Son then doubled its workforce to six on March 1, 2020 and had to lay them all off two weeks later.
When asked if he thought that was the end of the business, Josh said, “There were definitely days I thought that,” he nods.
The Scheutzows paid their staff four weeks’ severance and dove into their savings to stay afloat.
And then, the Columbus Crew ownership group called again about the new stadium.
“Hundreds of pieces of custom furniture, tables and credenzas,” Josh said of the huge Crew order. “Just an opportunity we would have never had if we didn’t have this tiny little project.”
Putting people before profit produced prosperity for A Carpenter’s Son.
“We build things that bring people together and I don’t think that will ever change,” Josh insists.
A downpour hit just as we were finishing our interviews. A reminder of sorts that the rain will fall.
“It feels like a gift,” Laura close her eyes in reflection. “All those things are such a gift.”
But the son, and his sons, will rise again.