• 57°

Olympic Drywall: 60-year history of serving communities with installations and repairs

By Natalie Anderson

SALISBURY — One drywall business has served the local community since 1997, but it had even earlier roots in Buffalo, New York, and Port Charlotte, Florida.

Founded in 1955 in Buffalo, Ronnie Wetzler of Olympic Drywall took over his father’s business in 1979 and moved the company to Florida. He sold the business — with the exception of the name — in 1990 and moved to Salisbury to “semi-retire.”

But in 1997, Olympic Drywall was back, and it’s become “well-known in construction around here,” Wetzler said.

“I just wanted one house a week to keep myself busy because I’ve never been one to sit still,” he said. “All the (local) builders wanted me on the job, and they said, ‘Why don’t you start your own business?’ And I said, ‘I’ve already been up and down that road.’ ”

Then he talked to his wife, Vickie, who said, “Let’s do it.” Vickie is the registered owner of the business, and Ronnie said he’s a consultant.

Olympic Drywall provides quality workmanship, Ronnie said, for services that include drywall installation and repair and ceiling removal and repair for commercial and residential buildings. Beyond Rowan County, Olympic Drywall serves Cabarrus, Iredell, Davie, Davidson, Stanly and Mecklenburg counties.

“They call us and it’s done right the first time,” Ronnie said.

The name involves a connection Ronnie has with sports. His father began auto racing in the late 1950s, and Ronnie helped him before getting into racing himself in 1979. In 1990, he said he won a race at Desoto Speedway — which has since closed — in Florida.

And along the way, Ronnie made friends with athletes, including professional wrestler Lawrence Wendell Pfohl, who’s better known as “Lex Luger.” They bonded at church over their love for the Buffalo Bills, which ultimately led to Lex Luger giving Ronnie a No. 12 jersey from former Bills quarterback Jim Kelly — a jersey that Kelly wore in a playoff game, he said.

Olympic Drywall employs 25 full-time subcontractors, and Ronnie said the company provides worker’s compensation if the subcontractors don’t have it.

Among those subcontractors is 35-year-old son Ryan, who expects to take over the business eventually. He’s been involved since he was 16.

Ronnie said Ryan and his friend Frankie are “two of the best finishers around here,” adding that “everyone wants them on the job.”

“I supply all the materials, all the labor,” Ronnie said. “I get to use what I want to use that way. I know what works and what doesn’t work.”

Olympic Drywall is located at Ronnie’s home, 2605 Artz Road. The business is open Monday through Friday from 6 a.m. to 5 p.m., and on Saturday from 6 a.m. to noon.

Contact reporter Natalie Anderson at 704-797-4246.


East Spencer

East Spencer draws crowd for annual community day


In Rowan’s legislative races, Howard, Warren get off to strongest start in fundraising


From Navy SEAL to Medicare agent, Trent Waller looks to continue serving his community


In 13th Congressional District race, Budd, Huffman differ on government’s role in COVID-19 help


Rowan County Telecommunications joins new state digital 911 system


School board will consider scheduling public hearings for Faith, Enochville closures


Biz Roundup: Food Lion makes donation to support racial equality and justice


Republicans rally supporters at Saturday lunch


Budd holds wide lead over Huffman in fundraising, cash on hand


UPDATED: 1 shot, 5 in custody after shooting at haunted house that attracted 1,000 visitors


Trump picks conservative Amy Coney Barrett to fill Supreme Court seat


Deadly September propels Rowan County to 100 deaths from COVID-19


Highway Patrol charges man in hit-and-run after finding vehicle hidden in woods


NC elections board, Republicans at odds over absentee ballot rule changes


Voters struggling with witness rules in early voting


Trump expected to announce conservative Amy Coney Barrett for Supreme Court


County reports COVID-19 percent positive rate of 8%


Rowan County United Way sets $1.5 million goal at drive-in kickoff event


Blotter: Adult daughters accused of beating up mother

China Grove

China Grove firefighters injured after truck overturns


Salisbury VA to reopen entry, exit gates


Sheriff’s Office looking for suspect in Burlington Coat Factory theft


Requests for absentee ballots top 9,000 in Rowan


Spencer approves supplemental USDA loan for Park Plaza project