McIntyre's Plumbing Wins Small Business Makeover

They say it was just luck that helped an East Texas business win a nationwide contest.

Wayne McIntyre and his wife Ginger of McIntyre Plumbing won the $100,000 Small Business Makeover offered by Sam's Club.

The McIntyres just returned from Washington DC Wednesday night and spoke to KLTV 7 News' Danielle Capper about their win that just happened by chance.

Wayne and Ginger were handed an entry form as soon as they walked in to Sam's Club. It would turn out to be a shopping trip they'll never forget.

"For whatever reason she kept it in the basket and we actually got back to the office with it," explained Wayne. "She said do you think we should do this, and I said, it's a waste of time. So she said, 'I want to do it. This is the last day - I want to do it'."

It almost did turn into a waste of time.

The McIntyres sent their entry off just minutes before the deadline.

Then, out of thousands of other applicants, their names were called.

"[I said] really? Are you sure? And they said yes. And I said are you sure? And I said no, I've never won anything."

But it took another trip to Sam's Club to make Wayne realize his lucky break was for real.

"And I showed her this piece of paper the paper saying we had won and I said is this for real. And she said oh yes this is for real and a guy named McIntyre won it and he's from Tyler and I said yah that's me. and it got crazy around there then. They had all the managers come shaking my hand.

Finally, it set in.

"We're just lucky. Very fortunate."

This lucky turn took them to our nations Capitol, where they claimed their prize and attended the National Small Business Summit.

"We were able to meet John McCain, Kay Bailey and Louie Gohmert."

But today, it's back to business for the McIntyres, with some new tools to make their business bigger and better.

"They are going to help us be able to advertise and get more customers...they are going to actually send people here to help us, monitor us, help us use the computer better, teach us to get better advertisement."

And in light of this new fortune, Wayne still gives credit where credit is due.

"She won it, not me," he says, pointing to a photo of his wife. "She did it all."

Wayne and Ginger started McIntyre Plumbing in 1985. They employ 18 people, including them and their two children.

Danielle Capper, reporting.