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Herrick Auto Rebuilders marks 65th anniversary

Published: Sunday, Jan. 5, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT
(Photo provided)
Gary Riegler (left) and Skip Herrick own and operate Herrick Auto Rebuilders in Crystal Lake, which celebrated 65 years in business in December.

CRYSTAL LAKE – Herrick Auto Rebuilders celebrated its 65th anniversary in December and is proud to continue to serve the Crystal Lake community. 

On Dec. 1, 1948, Walt Herrick opened a car repair business at 77 E. Woodstock St. in Crystal Lake, in the Bauer Garage, which previously was the local Studebaker dealership. In 1953, he moved the business to 634 W. Terra Cotta near the intersection of Route 14. His dedication to repair work, customer service and community involvement built a solid reputation and business.

Today, Herrick Auto Rebuilders remains family-owned and operated by Walt Herrick’s son, Skip Herrick, and his son-in-law, Gary Riegler. Both are committed to providing the same great customer service and attention to detail for which Herrick Auto has been known for the past 65 years, according to a news release.

Walt Herrick graduated from Woodstock High School in 1941 and joined the Army Air Corps as an aircraft mechanic in 1943. Using the money he saved while in the service, he bought the equipment he needed to start his own body shop.

Walt Herrick served the Crystal Lake community in many ways, including sitting on the Crystal Lake City Council for eight years and serving on the Crystal Lake Park Board and the Planning Commission.

Walt Herrick retired from the business in 1987 and died in 2007, but he was always proud of the relationships built at his business. The children and grandchildren of original customers still bring their cars to the shop. 

“My father taught us to do a quality job and put the customer first,” Skip Herrick said in a news release. “Our office staff is here to answer any questions you may have about insurance, the repair process or securing a car rental. And our highly-trained technicians use only the latest repair procedures and technologically advanced equipment available. The result is the finest quality work, guaranteed in writing by our lifetime warranty.” 

“We are proud of the work we do,” Riegler said in a news release.

For information about Herrick Auto Rebuilders, call Gary Riegler at 815-459-3232 or visit

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