The Larson Group is celebrating a special employee this week. For a total of fifty years, journeyman technician Dennis “Fuzzy” Franz has been employed at the Peterbilt dealer group’s Portage, Indiana-based location.
Staff threw a grand celebration for the die-hard Chicago Cubs and classic cars fan in honor of his dedicated service, gifting him with a custom plaque and plenty of food to go around the dealership.
Service Manager Andy Cox said, “Dennis comes to work every day, and with a positive attitude after 50 years. He has a lot of respect from not only our dealership and TLG, but throughout the industry. He is a huge part of making our store successful.”
Dennis shakes hands with general manager Brett Myers.
Immediately after earning his high school diploma, Dennis joined the United States Marine Corps before receiving an Honorable Discharge during the summer of 1970.
Hired on at what was formerly named Great Lakes Peterbilt on September 7, 1970, Dennis has since become an expert in diagnosing and repairing truck engines, as well as assisting the rest of his team wherever he can jump in. Of course, his graduating from Eaton, Meritor and Bendix training courses have also attributed to his level of expertise in the service field.
“The real ones that actually taught how to tear down and rebuild differential, transmissions, etc.,” Dennis said in a 2017 interview covering his 47th anniversary.
Dennis also said being able to come to work every day and help other techs and customers solve any issues with their trucks is the most exciting part about his job.
Cox said, “He does a great job of training the younger apprentices and makes sure they all understand what he is teaching them.”
“I’m willing to go above and beyond to ensure the jobs get done, and properly,” said Dennis.
Regional Vice President Mike Thurston also presented Dennis with an Anthony Rizzo jersey, who is the first basemen for the Chicago Cubs – Dennis's favorite sports team.