YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio — Boak & Sons Inc. believes in treating all of its employees like family, and when one of those family members passed away suddenly of a heart attack in April 2019, founder and President Sam Boak made continuous efforts to support the family he left behind.
Mark Odom, or "Odie," was a roofing department employee at Boak & Sons for over 20 years. He started with the company when he was only 18 years old, and quickly became a star employee. He worked his way up to a foreman position with the company and was nicknamed "Superman" for his obsession with the character as well as his super-power-like effort and attitude on the job.
"Odie was one of the best employees to ever join our team," said Boak. "Everyone wanted him on their crew. He made people laugh, he worked his butt off and he never hesitated to help someone whether it was during work hours or on his own time. When he passed, it put a hole in this family that will never be filled. When you see a young man grow into a leader like Odie; that's just not something you see every day. We miss him, and we will continue to take care of his wife and three kids in any way that we can. We take care of our own."
Mark's widow, Mandy, and her three children are still local to the Youngstown area. When Mandy reached out to Boak & Sons about needing some siding work done on her home, Boak knew it would be a meaningful project. Not only did Boak & Sons replace her siding, but they also replaced her gutters, and the crew even volunteered their own time to replace the wood landing and stairs on her front stoop. As a surprise to Mandy, Boak did the entire project completely free of charge.
"I cannot thank Sam and the rest of the people at Boak & Sons enough for what they've done for my family," said Mandy Odom. "Mark had such a heart of gold, and he truly loved this company. He had so many close friends that were coworkers, and I don't know what I would've done without them after he passed. They kept us going. This project was above and beyond my expectations and I'll be forever grateful for Sam and everyone at Boak & Sons."
Odie was constantly telling everyone how proud he was of his children and his family, and that was definitely reciprocated by his children. Boak says that Mark, Mandy and their children will forever be a part of the Boak & Sons family.