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CAC Plumbing celebrates 10 years by feeding its 1,000-plus customers

By Jessica Coates
jessica.coates@salisburypost.com

SALISBURY — CAC Plumbing owner Cedric Cuthbertson said that feeding people is the best way he knows to show that you appreciate them.

That’s why, for the last nine years, he has been feeding his customers a catered end-of-year meal to show them his appreciation.

“I mean, I’m so thrilled about it because they’re thrilled about it, you know? So me seeing my customers happy makes me happy,” Cuthbertson said.

He said that he never thinks about money when he’s deciding what food to get and how to decorate.

“It just comes out the heart. You know, I mean, long story short, if you live right, do right, the Lord will bless you with the finance to make it happen,” Cuthbertson said.

Cuthbertson began CAC Plumbing when he was in his early 20s, after graduating from Forsyth Technical Community College and completing an apprenticeship with Master Plumbing in Salisbury.

Now he and his employees are celebrating 10 years in business — a business that Cuthbertson said is growing by about 250 customers every year.

“And that’s a lot, that’s a whole lot. You know, especially plumbing. Across the county and surrounding counties, too,” Cuthbertson said.

Demetrius Almond started at CAC in January and said that the family atmosphere of the company is what helps them keep up with demand.

“Basically, if we’re all together as a family, we can basically accomplish anything and keep all of the work smooth,” Almond said. “If there’s plumbing that needs to be done, we’ve got to be there to do it.”

Just before Almond started at CAC, he was working at Walmart in a job that he said didn’t lead anywhere. He said that he also didn’t have any plumbing experience. But he said that Cuthbertson “blessed (him) with basic plumbing” skills.

“This is actually a career. So he put me into this and basically put me on a good path,” Almond said.

Almond said that he enjoys the puzzle- and problem-solving aspects of plumbing work.

“Everything goes together, everything has its way that it goes,” Almond said. “Plus, making people happy at the end. …I can’t tell you how many times we’ll do a job and the customer is just elated because they have water and stuff like that.”

Donna Hale — CAC Plumbing’s office manager — has worked at CAC for about three years. She said that she thinks of Cuthbertson as a brother.

“Cedric makes it fun,” Hale said. “See, I did 28, 29 years in the medical field before I started this. …I’ve worked with corporate business and I’ve worked with small business and my choice is small business. It’s more homey; it’s more personal; you feel more appreciated.”

Hale said that, in addition to making his employees feel like family, Cuthbertson also tries to make his customers feel like family.

“Cedric gets his customers involved in (the business). Our customers are actually who came up with CAC Potty House and we also had another customer come up with (the slogan): ‘We take crap from everybody,’” Hale said. “We did that last year at the dinner.”

CAC Potty House, a portable restroom renting service, is a new part of the CAC company that started in May.

“It’s like just one big family. It’s really a lot of fun. So I enjoy it,” Hale said.

Cuthbertson also puts an emphasis on helping the community during his annual customer appreciation dinners.

In their mailed invitations this year, he asked all of his customers to bring non-perishable food items to donate to Rowan Helping Ministries.

He also took up a collection for a friend of a local plumbing company, Justin Smart, who has multiple sclerosis (MS). Smart and his fiancé, Candice Basinger, are trying to raise money to fly to India for an experimental treatment that may halt Smart’s MS.

“I want to say thank you, Cedric,” Smart said during his remarks at the dinner. “Even though we’re not family, I think we feel like family. …And I’ll be there for you whenever I can.”

CAC Plumbing is located at 407 S. Salisbury Ave. in Granite Quarry. They can be reached at 704-278-3719 and are open 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.

Contact reporter Jessica Coates at 704-797-4222.

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