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Life Changes: An Important Journey to Haiti after the Earthquake takes Patton Ford from a future in law to a plumbing

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The path to success has changed over the years for Patton Ford. When he graduated from St. Andrew’s Episcopal School, his GPA was among the highest in his class. When he got a degree in business from Ole Miss he was once again at the top of his class. Plan to go to law school and join the ranks of the Mississippi Bar.

That was his plan anyway. But Ford knew that plans don’t always follow a straight path. The summer after graduation, Patton was working in a liquor store to pay bills for a place in Oxford. He was studying for the Law School Entrance Examination (LSAT) when he realized just how seriously the commitment he was about to make. Three more years of schooling weighed down his shoulders. He was 22 years old.

Perhaps, the prospect of attending law school made Ford think about his life’s purpose. He wanted to adjust his plan. The idea of ​​peace of mind and thinking about what God had intended for him made him think of faraway places in this world.

“Before I embark on this path of being a lawyer or law school, I would like to have a little bit of perspective alignment. I’d like to see the world from an angle I’ve never experienced before.”

Soon he’s back home on the North Side to visit his parents, Mike and Jill Ford, on Father’s Day. That Sunday, he went to a Sunday school class. The person who taught this class was a man named Stan Buckley.

He used to be a pastor at First Baptist Jackson. He left to start a church or church service called “But God.” There, he created a program to motivate his followers to go to Haiti and start opening ministries and medical facilities after the earthquake that struck Haiti in 2010.

He spoke with Stan that day about going to live in Haiti for about three months. He decided to go. When he arrived, he began helping construct a building. His first job was to install plumbing.

He started helping people out of their devastated communities daily.

“About an hour from Port-au-Prince, there were literally orchard tents with families living.”

Soon after starting his journey in Haiti, he became friends with Mike and Jean Kenny, a Belhaven couple who were also on a retreat. After a few conversations with them, he learns that they own a company, Quality Plumbing, back home.

“We started talking about what the world needed, and where had I been in my life …”

After my time in Haiti, he saw people forced to illegally burn trash due to no waste

The management system, after all the conversations with Kennys, and after many hours spent in prayer and selfless acts, felt a certain attraction toward a career in plumbing.

“In Haiti, I really felt a calling from God. What I saw happening in the legal and many other areas was that jobs were just disappearing.”

“I am a staunch believer in the text of the Bible which says that a man plots his ways, but God directs his steps, and as you know, there are a lot of different people in the process. The short answer is that the way I became a plumber is the same way I became a father and son.

Ford’s trip to Haiti was a modest one to say the least. When he came and told his parents of his plans to follow his feelings, they immediately became anxious.

“My mom will be the first to tell you – she was confused, anxious and anxious, and I was a little surprised when I got home and told her I wanted to be a plumber.”

But that didn’t stop Ford. Changes in plans don’t necessarily mean you’ll arrive at a different place. Sometimes both paths can lead to success, but all too often, it is the path you choose that determines whether you will succeed.

Ford began working, attending the night school of plumbing at Hinds Community College, and he worked with his friends he met in Haiti, Mike and Jean Kenny, on their plumbing business.

Things went smoothly for two years. It was during these two years that Patton Ford met his wife, Elizabeth. They have a child together, Taft, and Ford decide to open their own company.

“I finished the program at Hinds, and went through a full professional training with Mike and Jean Kenny at Quality Plumbing. From there I started my own business.”

Ford Plumbing & Gas LLC It was founded in 2018. Since then, it has had moderate success. He even ran for mayor in Ridgeland before moving to Madison.

During his trip to Haiti, Ford felt that the Lord had helped him reach true vocation distinction. Faced with a drastic change in his plans in his life, he did not hesitate in what he felt was an appeal.

“When I saw people illegally burning their waste, in the wake of that terrible earthquake, on my trip to Haiti, I gained a deep appreciation and respect for garbage workers and waste management. I realized that you take waste management for granted, especially solid waste like food and garbage.”

For Patton Ford, the path to success has changed over the years. But this change did not prevent him from reaching his goal.

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