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A family of air

image L-R: Patrick and Keith Wilks help run the business that Patrick’s father started.

SAN ANTONIO - Three generations of the Wilks family have led to what Wilks Air Conditioning & Heating has become today. With founder David Wilks as owner, his son, Patrick Wilks, as president, and his nephew, Keith Wilks, as vice president, the family business has grown strong.





    To make extra money, Hugo Wilks, David’s father, would buy trailer loads of old washers, dryers and other appliances from Sears and then cannibalize everything to fix what they could with parts from other machines. They would repair as many appliances as they could and sell the work-ing washer machines, dryers, microwaves, refrigerators, and used appliances to put food on the table and make ends meet.
    “So, David really learned how to do a lot of mechanical things and how to repair small appliances growing up from a very young age,” explains Patrick. “They did that on a fairly regular basis and then that led to people that bought from Hugo and kind of a side business for my grandfather. That’s how my dad got started in the repair parts of it.
    “Through high school, he would take night classes at St. Philip’s to get his air conditioning certification. And by time he graduated high school, he also had a certificate for air conditioning and heating in order to start his business.”
    David founded Wilks Appliance in May of 1974, and though it has changed names, it’s still David’s company that does repair for air conditioning and heating with a few more services, including home performance work and building envelope testing.
    When Patrick was a teenager, he shadowed his dad on the job over the summer, learning most of what he knows through on-the-job training and watching his father do the work. Keith worked in the same field and came into the business in 2009. The family works well together, and outside of work, they spend a lot of quality time together.
    Patrick and his wife, Alicia, have three children; a 4-year-old daughter, Raeleigh; a soon-to-be 3-year-old daughter, McKinley, and a 3-month-old son, Luke. Keith and his wife, Kellyn, have two children; a 7-year-old son, Urban, and a 4-year-old son, Banner.
    Patrick’s family has a piece of property where they hope to build a house in the near future, and they have cows on the property, which their daughters love to feed. Keith’s family also has property in the country with cows on the land. David devotes a lot of time to his grandchildren, and they love spending time at his house and fishing at his pond.
    Wilks Air Conditioning and Heating does mainly residential repair, replacement, and service work as well as light commercial. –mh

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Mary Hazlett mary@constructionnews.net