Nathaniel Washington Still Shines after 55 Years with U-Haul

Jan 16, 2023

In 1967, the Beatles topped the charts with “All You Need Is Love.” That same year, all Nathaniel Washington needed was a job. Fortune smiled on him when his brother-in-law encouraged him to apply for a job with U-Haul through Warrington Equipment Manufacturing.

Just like The Fab Four, Washington scored a hit, launching a career that has eclipsed 55 years.

Washington came aboard in January 1967 as a production helper. During his five-and-a-half decades with U-Haul, Washington has made his mark as an assembler, assembly lead person, production specialist, production supervisor and heavy-machine operator, including time spent at Falls Manufacturing from 1986 to 2006, which broadened his experience.

These days, Washington tests truck chassis that come in from Ford – after the van boxes have been installed and before the trucks enter U-Haul Company’s vehicle-sharing system.

“I listen for noise and look for anything that’s not quite right with our moving vans,” Washington told U-Haul News. “My team and I want to make sure that when a truck reaches a customer, that everything is perfect with it. Anything that shouldn’t be there won’t be there.”

Then and now

One big difference between 1967 and 2023 is how U-Haul trucks are made ready for customers.

“The way we build moving vans is totally different now from how we did things back in the ’60s,” Washington said. “In the old days, we had to manufacture the sides of trucks, as well as the roofs … piece by piece … completely from scratch. Now the sides and roofs come to us prefabricated, so it’s simply a matter of positioning holes and riveting components into the locations they need to go, which makes assembly more precise while taking less time.

“Clearly, we’ve modernized our procedures. As a result, we’ve become tremendously more efficient over the years.”

Despite supply-chain issues having somewhat slowed down Warrington, that company remains a beehive of activity. Its production of tow dollies, RV trailers, U-Box containers and the trucks Warrington tests – they come through the facility.

Another significant part of Washington’s job satisfaction is his crew.

“It’s the people I work with who really make my day,” Washington emphasized. “I’m on a fantastic team.”

Formula for success

“Nathaniel has been here for so long, and he cares so much about what he does,” stated Nick Diniglio, president of Warrington Manufacturing. “It shows every day when he’s working. Nathaniel takes pride in everything he does because he really cares about this Company.

“He realized early on that U-Haul was, and still is, a place where he could make a future and grow with it. He saw a future at U-Haul. In fact, Nathaniel saw the same thing L.S. and Anna Mary Shoen saw when they co-founded U-Haul. Nathaniel understands that we make our U-Haul customers’ and their families’ lives better. That understanding speaks a lot about what we do as a Company for the communities we serve.”

Washington’s formula for success is the same today as it was when he started in 1967, and exactly what he told U-Haul News at his 50-year anniversary in 2017.

“Always be on time,” he said. “Go to work every day with a positive attitude. Never be satisfied with things as they are, or with just coasting through until your shift is over. When it comes to job performance, always strive to raise your personal bar.”

More articles like this one…

What’s New

Temple Tornado: U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Self-Storage in Texas

Temple Tornado: U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Self-Storage in Texas

U-Haul Co. of North Austin is making 13 facilities available to provide 30 days of free self-storage and U-Box® container usage to families impacted by Wednesday night’s powerful tornado that struck Temple and wreaked havoc along Interstate 35. Many homes in and...

Tornado Recovery: U-Haul Offering 30 Days Free Storage in Iowa

Tornado Recovery: U-Haul Offering 30 Days Free Storage in Iowa

U-Haul® is offering recovery assistance to victims in Greenfield, Red Oak and other areas impacted by the devastating tornadoes that tore through central Iowa on Tuesday. Countless homes in these communities were damaged or destroyed, and a number of lives were...

U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Self-Storage following Houston Storms

U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Self-Storage following Houston Storms

Thirty-three U-Haul stores across Greater Houston are extending 30 days of free self-storage and U-Box portable storage container usage to residents impacted by last week’s devastating storms. Powerful winds and rains caused mass damage to homes and businesses,...

Mother’s Day Gift: U-Haul Helps Kurt Warner Charity Furnish Home

Mother’s Day Gift: U-Haul Helps Kurt Warner Charity Furnish Home

In celebration of Mother’s Day, Kurt and Brenda Warner’s First Things First Foundation worked with Habitat for Humanity and longstanding corporate partners like U-Haul® to provide Gabriela, a single mother of four, with a fully furnished home in Peoria, Ariz. The...

Apartment Evacuees: 30 Days Free Storage Offered in Winnipeg

Apartment Evacuees: 30 Days Free Storage Offered in Winnipeg

U-Haul® Company of Central Canada is offering 30 days of free self-storage to the 250-plus tenants being forced to evacuate their apartments at 2440 Portage in Winnipeg. The City of Winnipeg has issued an evacuation of the Portage Avenue apartment block known as...

Storm Relief: U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Storage in Tallahassee

Storm Relief: U-Haul Offers 30 Days Free Storage in Tallahassee

U-Haul® is offering 30 days of free self-storage and U-Box® container usage to residents in and around Tallahassee impacted by severe weather. Powerful thunderstorms and a tornado hit Tallahassee late Thursday, leaving a trail of residential and commercial...