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Morgan’s helpful hardware man

Doug Duerden

By Todd and Monie Hatch

Morgan is a place that really does have a “helpful hardware man,” but ours doesn’t stop at just assisting with nuts and bolts or the proper pipe fitting.  No, our hardware man is helpful in ways that go far beyond his inventory.  He truly represents why we are all so lucky to live in a community like Morgan.

Where else do you find the owner of a hardware store who would make a house call to ensure that an elderly customer can get their new purchase safely in the house? Or basically assemble anything you buy in the store if you’re a rookie and don’t have the foggiest idea how something works? 

Our helpful hardware man cares a lot more about the satisfaction of his customers than he does about just making sales.

Of course we’re talking about Doug Duerden at Ace Hardware, fixture in the Morgan community. 

It seems like there is always something fun going on at Ace Hardware, from the frequent BBQ demonstrations where the whole town gets to eat some tasty meat made on those Trager grills, to the Halloween celebration which has become an annual tradition.  This year even featured live bands from the community.

And what would the high school do without the support of our helpful hardware man?  From donating time, supplies and equipment to providing a yearly scholarship, Doug is constantly finding ways to make a difference in the lives of Morgan’s future hardware customers as well.

Sometimes the service Doug provides is as simple as a joke that brightens the day of anyone who happens to be in the store at the time.  Often these quips are at the expense of one or another of his favorite customers, always in a way that leaves everyone’s feelings intact. 

Small communities are renowned for having a gathering place where there is a constant stream of local citizens who frequent the stores as much for the banter as for the goods and services, and Ace Hardware has naturally become such a place.

Heroes come in all shapes and sizes, but we tend to take more notice when there is one single heroic act on a grand scale.  I would submit that we should do a better job as a community of recognizing the heroes that string together a lifetime of personal, and often private, small heroic kindnesses.  So, next time you find yourself in Ace Hardware, take a moment to say thank you to our helpful citizen who just happens to also be a hardware man.

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