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Chan History

Chan Foreign Car has been in business since 1979. It was founded by Paul & Judy Chan and is managed today by Debbie Chan. Below is an article from the Feb 19, 1990 Daily Camera that featured the shop. 20 years later Chan’s still provides the same quality and friendly service for your car.

Paul and Judy would like to thank Dr. William Markel for serving as their sponsor during their work at the Broomfield Church.

Chan’s treats customers like friends

By LINDA CORNETT Camera Staff Writer
Chan Foreign Car in Boulder Colorado
Floop, floop, floop.

Great. Late for work, in the middle of rush hour traffic on the Diagonal, and a tire goes flat.

But, wait a minute, there was a gas station somewhere along here, wasn’t there? Wobble into the lot in front of Chan’s Foreign Car, and a small man in a dark blue uniform hurries up. Within minutes, the tire is changed for the spare. How much?

Oh, no charge. Just a few min­utes, he says in heavily accented English, with a broad smile.

And Paul Chan has a new cus­tomer for life.

The shop Chan owns with his wife Judy has moved into down­town Boulder, but his style of doing business hasn’t changed. Small jobs are most often free, and Chan will likely throw in an impromptu class on what went wrong and how it can be prevent­ed or repaired easily in the fu­ture. Need a big repair job that you can’t afford? Chances are very good Chan will do the work and let you pay it off gradually, no hassle. Just call Judy when you can cover your check.

“Coming from Chicago, this is not heard of,” said Henry Tad-deucci, whose love of old cars has guaranteed a continuing rela­tionship with Chan. “They’ve been real good to me over the years.”

Boulder city spokesman David Grimm is another Chan fan. “I drive in with my car sounding like someone threw a jar of pen­nies into a washing machine, and he tweaks a few screws here and a knob there and it works. And he says, ‘No charge.’ For someone who grew up in a small town, that is the kind of thing you expect in Craig, not Boulder. They always know who I am. It’s nice to be treated like a neighbor.”

Judy Chan, the bookkeeper, says the neighborilness pays off. Despite its easy policies, the station rarely gets a bad check. “We were poor before, so we know how poor people feel,” she said.

“If I am honest to you, you are honest to me,” said Chan. “You want me to help you, I can help. In my life, a lot of people help me. We in this life should help each other.”

It is a generosity born of hard­ship. In 1953, when Chan was 13, he left his family and his native China behind and moved to Hong Kong. “I was scared. I found jobs. In Hong Kong, you have to work to support yourself.” Then, he was accepted into a church-sponsored mechanics school. After graduation he taught at the school for four years and at 24 became its di­rector.

In 1967, Paul and Judy Chan left Hong Kong for the West. A Broomfield church had sent word to the Hong Kong school that they would sponsor a cou­ple who were willing to work at the church. Before long, Paul was working two jobs, cleaning the church with Judy and re­pairing cars at Empire Sport Car Center. And saving. By 1979, they had the money to open their own business.

“As a mechanic,” Chan says with a satisfied smile, “you can always do something. You never get hungry, but you never get rich.”

The Chans have, however, managed to stretch their income to bring 22 members of their families to the area, welcome them into their home and sup­port them until they have found work and homes of their own.

No big deal, Chan says. Fami­ly or neighbors, you do what you can to help.