George Schmall and his Area-Pro company helping veterans fight depression
By Tim Walker
The names of George Schmall and Area-Pro have remained well-known to Dayton residents for decades. A part of the local business community here “for 31 or 32 years,” as he says, Schmall and Area-Pro, the window replacement business he owns and operates, have earned the trust of Miami Valley homeowners and business owners through their insistence on using only the highest quality products and dependable, well-trained craftsmen for each job.
Area Pro offers economically efficient vinyl replacement windows, roofing and siding services, construction of patio rooms, and remodeling services to property owners in the Dayton area. Schmall and his business have consecutively earned an A+ rating year after year with the Better Business Bureau and he prides himself on providing only the best-quality products at a fair price. “Old Fashioned Integrity” has been Schmall’s motto and operating philosophy since he first started Area-Pro back in 1986.
But there is another side to George Schmall that many of his business customers may not be aware of. Schmall is a Vietnam-era military veteran and has made it his mission to lend a hand to the many fellow veterans who struggle with depression.
“I am the creator and founder of Push Up Vets,” says Schmall. “P-U-S-H stands for Patriots United for Suicide Help, and our website is www.PushUpVets.org.”
“We are a 501(c)3, nonprofit organization,” Schmall says. “We just got that designation over the last month or so. There are many sides to me and what I do and this is just one of them. If you go to that website and scroll down you’ll see it’s basically a panic device. We’re setting this up now, it’s going to have all revised copy where people can donate and we’re going to make services available at no charge to veterans in need.”
Push Up Vets is a project Schmall has been working on for two years, and with good reason. The suicide rate among U.S. military veterans is staggeringly high, with a 2017 report from the Veterans Administration estimating 20 veterans taking their lives each day. Of those 20, the VA stated, 14 were not receiving mental health services. After adjusting for differences in age and sex, the risk for suicide was at least 22 percent higher among veterans when compared to nonveteran adults in the United States.
“Hopefully, everything will be finalized on the website this week,” says Schmall. “We changed the address from a dot-com to a dot-org when we got our 501(c)3 designation so everything now will focus on donations and making services available to our veterans who need them.”
For our fighting men and women who are struggling with mental health issues Schmall has nothing but sympathy, combined with a desire to help.
“The basic premise is this,” he says. “If we can get these tools into the hands of people who are on the fence and considering suicide they might find it a lot easier to push a button for help than it would be to pull the trigger on a gun. That’s the bottom line.”
Whether installing windows or helping others it’s clear that George Schmall and Area-Pro are there to help and that “Old-Fashioned Integrity” is much more than just a slogan.