Dedication, hard work, and discipline.
To be successful at anything, those are the basic requirements.
And for Lucas England, a 2018 Marion graduate who lives by that mantra, he’s well on his way.
Immediately after high school, he went to trade school and worked to become an electrician – working alongside mentors Chris Jackson and Chad Edwards. These days, he’s the assistance maintenance supervisor at the Wexford-Missaukee ISD, where he helps maintain just about everything. It’s a big job, with a lot of responsibility, and he loves it.
Growing up in Marion, Lucas did many of the same things we all do: playing t-ball, helping out on the farm, spending most of his days outside. And while some things change, others stay the same. When he finds the time, you’ll still probably find him outdoors. Whether he’s ice fishing with his buddies in the winter, or spending time with his girlfriend Natalie and his dog Ziva on the beach in the summertime.
He loves it. The outdoors. The peace and quiet. The overlooked beauty of it all.
And the people. That’s what Lucas loves about northern Michigan and the community of Marion. That’s what keeps him here.
We caught up with Lucas recently where we learned a little bit more about his story. We learned that Lucas England is certainly more than just another face in the crowd.
Marion Press: Where were you born and raised? What kept you busy as a kid?
Lucas: Marion, Michigan is where I grew up, basically. Went to school there the whole time. Probably as a kid, just being outside, hanging out with my friends. Hunting and fishing, t-ball as a kid, baseball.
MP: Did you have a big family? What kept the England family busy?
Lucas: There were five of us: My big sister Elizabeth England, and my little sister Emily England. My mom and dad: Jerry and Sandra England. We had kind of a little farm here at home; we had horses, and pigs and chickens. Taking care of all those – those were all great experiences here. We called it the Funny Farm.
MP: What kept you busy in school at Marion?
Lucas: Track kept me busy, English class kept me busy – that was not my strong suit, I’ll be honest. A little extra time in English class! Running was something my family did: my mom and dad both ran when I was younger. I remember them doing the 5k’s and the whole thing.
MP: What were your favorite memories from school?
Lucas: Probably lunch with the lunch ladies; honestly, I loved that! Track’s probably the bigger one, it was about the only sport I participated in throughout high school. It was the only thing that I was kind of good at, so I just stuck with it.
MP: After graduation, where did life take you?
Lucas: I went to trade school for 4 years to become an electrician, and I worked for Chris Jackson Electric here in Marion for 4 years.
MP: What did you enjoy the most about being an electrician?
Lucas: Most of what I enjoyed was the specialization of it. You know your thing, and when you pull up, it’s kind of like, “Yeah, I’m the electrician.” I enjoyed working with the people there a ton. Chris Jackson and Chad Edwards. What I really enjoyed things, is after you got done wiring lights, to watch them all come on. You flick a switch, they’re all super bright, and you’re like, “Yeah. I did that.” The finished product. The satisfaction.
MP: And now you’re with the ISD, tell us a little bit about that.
Lucas: Right now, I’m the assistant to maintenance supervisor at the [Wexford-Missaukee] ISD. That’s just all-around maintenance: Plumbing, anything mechanical, electrical, slight building. Basic maintenance, and dealing with the contractors who are in and out.
MP: Have you always been a hands-on worker? Where’d that come from? And what do you enjoy the most about working at the ISD?
Lucas: I was definitely a tactile learner: I had to have my hands on it, or at least be there to witness it. I always enjoyed doing stuff with my hands, so that’s kind of where I wanted to go with that. I think the people there at the ISD are really nice, and it’s a really great place. The people are super nice there. Working with Rick Johnson– he’s the supervisor now – that’s most of my enjoyment during the day, just working with him.
MP: When you’re not working, what keeps you busy?
Lucas: In the wintertime, ice fishing. I’m an avid ice-fisherman, that’s gotta be my favorite outdoor activity. We’ve had some odd weather this year [for ice fishing]. I go mostly locally, because of the time factor, but I take trips up to Little Bay De Noc, Lakes Burt and Mullett there right before the bridge. So I go all over the place, but always in Michigan. I usually fish with Tanner Eberhardt and Chase Ryan.
I hang out with my girlfriend, Natalie, a lot in the summertime: go the beach, try new places to eat, travel a little bit. And after work, it’s my German Shepard, Ziva. She’s a handful!
MP: What do you enjoy the most about living in the Marion community, and northern Michigan in general?
Lucas: That small town feel. The small community, for sure. I’ve worked in the big cities, and I’ve stayed in the big cities: Detroit, Lansing, Kalamazoo. I’ve been there and done that, and it’s definitely not the same; it’s not as enjoyable. Marion is more relaxed setting. The peace and quiet, that’s the biggest thing. The part of northern Michigan that I really enjoy is the overlooked beauty of it.
MP: Who have been your role models over the years?
Lucas: Three of the biggest role models are my father, Jerry England. I think he set a pretty good example. And then Chris Jackson, my old employer, and then Chad Edwards – he was my journeyman through my apprenticeship, and I spent most every day with him. Most of the reason they’re all my role models is because of teaching. Being a teacher. Helping me succeed and move on in a positive direction. You need as many people like that as possible.
MP: What’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?
Lucas: It was something along the lines of, “To be successful you have to have the attitude of success.” That stuck with me. You’ve got to think success before it can happen. You’ve got to understand what success takes before you are successful: Dedication, hard work, and discipline.
Faces in the Crowd: Lucas England
Dedication, hard work, and discipline.