Broadway Car Wash sale ends 48 year career for Quincy man

Posted: Feb. 9, 2013 12:26 am Updated: Mar. 2, 2013 3:15 am

Herald-Whig Senior Writer

James Grady said it will be hard to see his Broadway Car Wash sold and demolished at 1835 Broadway.

Grady, 81, said it's the last of three car washes he has opened and operated in Quincy going back 48 years.

"We had the first one in Quincy at Seventh and Vermont in 1965," Grady said.

That same year he built a five-bay car wash at 36th and Broadway that only lasted a few years. The man he leased the land from wanted to sell the property and his lawyers found a way to break the lease.

Broadway Car Wash was built during the winter of 1970-71, according to Grady. He had to tear down a couple of houses to construct his business. The site kept him busy until he turned over operation to his son-in-law a few years ago.

"I'm just going through the motions," Grady said.

Grady's daughter, Jeri Niewohner, said closing the family business is emotional.

"Dad doesn't want to let it go. He ... lived the American dream" of owning a business, she said.

Grady came back from the Korean War in the 1950s and got married. He worked at Montgomery Ward until it closed in the late 1960s. It was while he was working at Wards that Grady launched his own car washes.

"We had the first automatic car was at 36th and Broadway," Grady said.

Jeri Niewohner said the new property owners will put up a different kind of business. As the car wash is winding down, she said the family would be taking out any equipment they own.