When we learned that Paul Schubert, industry veteran and one of Rental Product News' loyal columnists since 1998, passed away on April 27, it came as a complete shock. He was such a strong individual, a force to be reckoned with.
Schubert's Standpoint has been one of the most popular features in the magazine since it began. With 40-plus years in the industry behind him, there was no one more knowledgeable, respected and admired than the man who founded Pro-Cut Products, served industry associations and consulted with hundreds of individual rental businesses during his career.
My initial encounter with Paul came while writing my first article about diamond blades. All of the sources I contacted said I should really be talking to Paul Schubert because he was instrumental in bringing diamond blades to the rental industry. So I contacted him and admitted that I was green and knew nothing about the subject matter.
Instead of becoming condescending or impatient with my ignorance, Paul took his time while he walked me through the particulars, making sure I understood all the details.
His passion for his products and the rental industry as a whole were obvious and infectious.
Passionate is an apt way to describe Paul. If he believed in something, he gave it 100 percent of his unwavering energy and support. Over the years of working with Paul, I learned that his passions were rooted in the conservative values of hard work, family and a love of his country.
To begin with, he truly believed in the importance of his life's work. He had a deep respect for and belief in the entrepreneurs who are the backbone of the rental industry, and his goal was always to help the small business people of this country become successful.
When Paul talked about his wife and children, you could hear the pride in his voice.
He often relayed stories about his stern, yet loving father and the lessons he learned from him. He relished passing those same lessons on to his own children and grandson.
Paul's love for his country was unquestionable as well. He was a veteran of the Korean War, having served in the Army stateside for two years, but his affinity for his country was born out of more than military service. He had a true admiration for the American "up by your bootstraps" notion of staking one’s claim and building something from nothing. He was determined to help those who would help themselves.
Paul's passions are part of why it's so hard to imagine that he's gone. With so much life left in him and so much more to offer, we know that he's still helping others in his new experience. While we will sorely miss Paul and know that our readers will too, we can all take solace in the knowledge that he made a difference in the lives of so many in our industry and that the wisdom he imparted to us over the years will live on forever.