MARSHALL - While he was serving in Iraq for the National Guard, Matt Whitesitt had plenty of time to contemplate what he wanted to do when he was done with his service.
Then came an opportunity to combine what he loved to do, work with powersports, with a potential business venture.
Whitesitt opened Patriot Powersports the first week of August on Main Street in Marshall.
Photo by Cindy Votruba
Matt Whitesitt opened Patriot Powersports in August, which is a family-owned consignment sales business. Whitesitt said his wife and children help out in the shop.
Patriot Powersports is family-owned, Whitesitt said, and is a consignment sales-based business, dealing in pre-owned motorcycles, all-terrain vehicles, utility terrain vehicles and snowmobiles.
"I've seen other companies do it elsewhere and seen the success that (the) other companies have," Whitesitt said.
Plus it's something he's always been interested in doing.
"Powersports have always been my hobby," Whitesitt said. "I've been riding motorcycles since I could walk."
Whitesitt has done diesel mechanics for 18 years before he decided to start Patriot Powersports. He's also been in the National Guard for 18 years. For the last six years, he worked full-time in the Guard, serving two tours in Iraq.
"While over there, I had a lot of time to think about what I wanted to do," Whitesitt said. "I had to find something to do anyway." But Whitesitt knew he wanted to be his own boss and probably turn a hobby of his into a career.
His new business came together quicker than he thought, Whitesitt said, figuring he'd get his 20 years in first with the Guard. The property was available and Whitesitt knew it felt right.
"I like the feel of the old shop," Whitesitt said.
In his circle of friends, Whitesitt said they all have the same interests and some were looking to sell items.
"I got a few pieces in to start," he said.
When a person brings in a motorcycle or ATV for consignment, Whitesitt will check it out.
"Usually the customer will bring in their machine and we'll assist with the appraisal," Whitesitt said. "We'll take it apart and detail it and make it look new." He said he wants to make sure every customer experience is a good one.
Whitesitt said Patriot Powersports also offers the full Drag Specialties line and is a Parts Unlimited dealer.
"We can get in any type of parts and accessories, clothing as well," Whitesitt said.
Whitesitt said his wife, Sara, and their children help with the business as well. His kids get off the bus at the shop and help clean the shop. Sara helps clean the machines on Saturday.
Whitesitt said he's also been bitten by the "Triumph bug," and enjoys fixing up old Triumph motorcycles. The first one he did he remembers bringing home in boxes. He's currently working on a 1968 Triumph at the shop, and some of the customers like to see the motorcycles as well.
"I love these old Triumphs," he said.