Business celebrates 50 years
by The Press and Standard | September 7, 2018 5:00 am
Last Updated: September 5, 2018 at 9:05 am
June McRoy of Edisto Beach, owner of BMK Distributors Inc. in Walterboro, was honored for the business’ 50th anniversary last Wednesday by representatives of REMA, a supplier of automotive and industrial tools with whom BMK has been doing business since its beginning.
BMK was started in 1967 in Savannah by the late William Lewis “Bill” McRoy and his wife June. A railroad engineer with the Atlantic Coastline Railroad, Bill began by buying $250 in tire tube patches which he sold on his day off. As the sideline expanded into a business, he named it BMK after his three sons: Barry, who is chief of Colleton County Fire-Rescue; Mark, who is now BMK’s vice president; and Keith, who works in real estate.
“It’s been a family business since the beginning. Dad thought Bill McRoy and Sons was too cliché,” Mark said. Bill was active in the business’ sales until he was 86 while June managed the manufacturing. All three sons worked in the business at one time, learning the value of hard work, Mark said. And now Mark’s daughter, Carlson, has joined the business in sales.
In 1972 the business moved to Walterboro, expanding to the point that in the 1980s it became one of the top manufacturers of wheel weights in the Southeast and the seventh largest in the U.S. In the late 1980s, the McRoys decided to sell the manufacturing part of the company and concentrate on sales.
Bill passed away recently after a hard-fought battle with cancer, but June “is still a vital member of the company, keeping the books and answering questions for customers that only 51 years of experience can answer,” Mark said.