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Smiths Falls’ Sendoff: Ottawa area bodyshop closes after 25 years

Ottawa, Ontario — As of July 30, 2021, Dan and Kathy Trudel are officially retired after closing up shop at Smiths Falls Auto Body.

“I enjoy working on cars,” Dan said. “The repairing and painting of the cars, no-brainer — I’ve done it for 40-some years, but I’ll miss the customers.”

Dan began restoring cars at 15 with a 1967 Mustang, replacing the six-cylinder motor with a 289 V8 alongside his father.

He bought a car for parts and removed the hood and fenders, “and that was my first early days of doing bodywork in my dad’s two-car garage.”

Longtime customers of Smiths Falls Auto Body are feeling a bit of anxiety alongside the transition.

“I have Dan’s cell number,” Bell said, as he dropped off keys to his Hummer for a rust spot repair. Bell has been a customer of Dan’s for years. “I will track him down.”

Another customer told Dan he was “more devastated losing me than his doctor.”

Matthews Auto Collision, Roy McLellahan at The Body Shop and Mike Fair’s GM Smiths Falls Collision are recommendations they offer in Smiths Falls.
“I have Dan’s cell number,” Bell said, as he dropped off keys to his Hummer for a rust spot repair. Bell has been a customer of Dan’s for years. “I will track him down.”

Another customer told Dan he was “more devastated losing me than his doctor.”

Matthews Auto Collision, Roy McLellahan at The Body Shop and Mike Fair’s GM Smiths Falls Collision are recommendations they offer in Smiths Falls.

“Our business … meant everything to us. It allowed us to work together, to raise our family of seven children, and it allowed us to retire,” said Dan and Kathy. “A bonus, we truly did have the best customers, and for all of this, we will be forever grateful. Thank you.”

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