Closing the Gate on 2018


Closing the Gate on 2018

Last year was an absolute roller coaster ride. Filled with the same types of ebbs and flows I imagine most entrepreneurs face on their journey to creating a sustainable business. About this time last year, I was convinced I had made a mistake and KC Cattle Company was not going to make it. I’m pretty sure the only thing that kept me going was my stubbornness and “never quit” mentality I had drilled into my head during my time in the military.

In March of last year, I was still struggling to figure out what my next move was to try to get some traction with steady sales. My wife texted me one day while I was on a conference call and told me to come up to the house ASAP. I excused myself from the call and flew up to the house to see what the deal was. I walked in the house and she had tears running down her face paired with a smile as she informed me, she was pregnant. My immediate reaction was pure excitement. I gave her a hug assured her everything would be ok. As I walked out of the house and had a second to think about the news, the fear set in. I was a running a failing business and couldn’t afford to pay myself a dime. Not to mention, don’t you need some kind of training to raise a kid? I sat down later that day with my good friend after visiting some restaurants to drill up some business and told him I had nine months to get KC Cattle Company to breakeven or profitable point. I told my wife if I wasn’t there when we had our son, “I’m folding up shop and getting a big-boy job.” 
Since then, I have worked my butt off to grow KC Cattle Company into something I can truly be proud of. We have seen a moderate amount of success in 2018 and none of it would have been possible if not for my business mentors, our veteran employees, my family, our amazing customers, and the Lord’s blessings on my life. Almost every day in 2018, I would fall asleep to the same prayer, “God, if this is the path you want me to take, please, provide a path forward. If it’s not what you want me to do, give me a sign.” God has paved a path forward and so much more. My two favorite memories of 2018 were our beef giveaway to the homeless in Kansas City and the birth of my son. Jeremy’s birth will forever change my life. This life has been a journey and I’m thankful for the bad just as much as I’m thankful for the good parts. If it were not for the bad, most of the good would have never happened.

For 2019, our goals are as lofty as ever. We aim to start farm-to-table dinners and tours of what we do out here come springtime. We are working towards adding pork and chicken products to the website. Lastly, I am most excited about working towards starting an incubator for veterans interested in entrepreneurship. This will be in partnership with War Horses for Veterans Foundation. A tremendous non-profit located in our backyard. Together, we want to bring veterans out to present a rough draft of a business plan, pair them with a successful individual in their perspective industry, and workshop how to make their goals obtainable.

Again, I would like to thank all of you for your support. Happy belated New Year!

- Pat


2 comments


  • Travis

    Pat,
    Your business and your support to the community and to our veterans is inspiring. Thank you.

    Can I buy beef at your farm? Are you going to have the farm-to-table dinners soon?

    Travis


  • Timothy Yager

    Patrick,

    I just heard you speaking with Mikey Kay on my favorite BBQ podcast – Man Meat BBQ. I am also a veteran (USAF 1980-84) and come from a long line of veterans with each of my 3 brothers being veterans (2 Army like yourself and 1 retired 30-year Command Master Chief USN) plus my son now 12 years into his AF career and nephew who just retired E-8 Army Infantry/Tanker. I live in Lawrence, Kansas and love Weston so I was excited to hear you farm in Weston.

    I’ve always wanted to try Wagyu and I really like your story and the fact you are local. I was lucky to get out of the AF and spend 29 years at SBC/AT&T doing what I learned in the military (stared as a union lineman) and now I am a retired AT&T VP of National Sales. With 2 other AT&T buddies I started my own very successful company, EM3 Networks where we sell the same networks to large businesses nationwide. I love that you’re pursuing your dreams and just wanted you to know if you ever need a free speaker to help get your message to entrepenuaers just let me know as I have done many talks for veterans and I speak to transitioning military in helping my brother (the Master Chief) as he runs a program at Fort Campbell titled Onward to Opportunity (O2O). He assists about 50-60 veterans through a 3 month free program where they get certifications in Business and IT and he brings in guest speakers to help these folks understand what awaits them when they take the uniform off and enter civilian life.

    I visited Normandy a few years ago and stood at the Ranger Memorial at Pointe du Hoc. I understand now why Rangers Lead The Way! In closing I just wanted to let you know, Veteran to Veteran that you have a new friend in Lawrence, Kansas and I wish you the best with your business and life’s journey. Feel free to contact me at anytime if you want to discuss business, entrepreneurism or life in general. I just sent you a LinkedIn connection and my telephone number is 785-331-7779. Best of luck Patrick and never forget that Rangers Lead The Way!

    Tim Yager


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