One Connection Inspires Lifetime Loyalty
Ninety-four-year-old WW II veteran William was drawn to State Farm by a single man’s kindness. He has now been a policyholder for 73 years.
With the modern ubiquity of screens, smartphones and social media conversation, it’s easy to lose sight of the power of face-to-face connection. But for 94-year-old policyholder William Schimm, one interaction with a single person earned his loyalty to State Farm® for 73 years.
A World War II veteran from Sioux City, Iowa, William had just turned 19 when he entered the United States Army. He served as a private in the Fourth Infantry Division, landing in Normandy 10 days after D-Day and remaining there throughout his time of service.
Upon returning to the U.S., William began his adult life by completing college and getting a job as an insurance investigator. He even bought a car. There was only one problem — he didn’t know how to drive it.
After seeing a sign for State Farm, William decided to stop by the local agent’s office. He strolled into Agent Larry Holland’s office and inquired about auto insurance. In the course of their conversation, William also mentioned that he needed to learn how to drive.
“Larry told me right there that he would get off work in a few hours and could teach me to drive that very afternoon. I’ll never forget that,” says William. “Especially after coming back from the war, it really meant a lot.”
William hadn’t been raised by his father, and he ended up relying on Larry in many ways.
“He was a really fatherly guy. We always sat and visited and talked about everything. He was about my dad’s age. I just felt very comfortable with him,” says William.
Over the next 73 years, William and his wife, Doris, purchased life, home and multiple auto insurance policies with State Farm. William insured several rental properties with the company as well. The couple now lives in Athens, Ill. Their current State Farm agent is Jenifer Sellers.
“William is by far one of the most interesting customers I have ever worked with. He continues to be an incredible advocate for State Farm,” says Jenifer. “His story is a shining example of how agents can impact customers. This is why the State Farm model works.”
State Farm, which was founded in 1922, has been with the Schimm family through every season, literally and figuratively. From rental property chaos and Iowa hail storms to the raising of four children and the birth of five grandchildren, William and Doris have had State Farm at their side.
Why has William stayed with State Farm for so many years?
“The service. Now I’m not just saying this; it’s actually what has happened—I’ve never had a problem with State Farm,” says William. “Anytime I wanted something or something happened, State Farm was there taking care of me.”