Financial: Al the optimist

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by Bart Basi

Having written articles for Floor Covering News for the past few decades, I had spoken numerous times with Al Wahnon. He and I had a working relationship that spanned the years. It was just a short while ago, my staff and I were writing articles celebrating Al’s 20th anniversary with Floor Covering News and his 50 years of contributions to the flooring industry. Upon hearing of the news of his passing away, I felt a loss.

As the editor of Floor Covering News he always had something positive to say. Despite the recent events of the past few years, including the collapse of the housing industry, the construction industry, contracting and the economy in recession, Al always focused on the bright spots. He didn’t look at the economic cup as half empty, ever. To him America was always the place to be in the world.

It didn’t matter if we were suffering our darkest hour or facing what some people perceived as an imminent abyss, Al always saw opportunity, the good, and always appealed to the “can do” attitude upon which this country was founded.

Al was truly a giant in the flooring industry. His newspaper, Floor Covering News, that he founded in 1986, has been there through the years to provide business, sales and even inspiration for an industry that is not always thought of as news making.

His lasting legacy will be that he always saw the light, always kept reaching for the high places, and never doubted the floor covering industry.

A man like Al will be difficult to replace. His passion for the industry and this country were remarkable and admirable. I will miss Al as a business person and the optimist he was.

I extend my deepest condolences to the family and friends who were touched by his life. My hope is that Al’s spirit may live on in our hearts and minds just as much as it has while he was among us.

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