It’s not hard to find a way to show pride in your school. You can buy almost anything in the school colors and sporting the school logo -- hats, shirts, coffee mugs, flags, decals. But Dennis Smith found a unique way to demonstrate his school spirit.
Smith, president and founder of Pinnacle Construction, Benton, Ky., is an alumnus of nearby Murray State University, home of the Racers. To show his allegiance to MSU and promote the close business relationship that Pinnacle has developed in managing several construction projects on the campus, Smith commissioned a special paint job for the company’s new Case TR270 compact track loader.
The machine not only displays Murray State Racers logos on the loader frame and bucket, but it also features a multi-tone blue paint job trimmed in yellow flames on the lift arms. Completing the unique design is the inscription, “Hottest Team in Town,” and the autographs of the school’s head football and basketball coaches. It’s quite a departure from the standard Case “Power Tan” paint job.
“We thought the custom paint job would be a great way to promote our close ties to Murray State,” said Smith. “It has caused quite a stir on campus already, and we look forward to loaning the machine to the school for promotional use at football games and other high profile events on campus, including fundraisers."
For creative inspiration and execution, Smith turned to local specialty artist, Jim Defew, owner of Defew’s Custom Painting and Body Shop in Benton. Defew has refined vehicle decoration into a high art form.
“Jim really outdid himself on creating the design for our Case loader,” Smith said. “It was a labor of love, and it shows in the finished product.”
Pinnacle’s work for Murray State could also be described as labors of love. The school is alma mater for three other company employees in addition to Smith. Among the recent construction projects that Pinnacle has undertaken for MSU are two student dormitories, a cafeteria renovation and a large addition to the school’s basketball arena, the CFSB Center.
“We really enjoy working on projects for Murray State,” Smith noted. “With the recent success of both the basketball and football teams, the school is getting a lot of attention and creating excitement. We’re happy to be part of that. It’s a lot of fun, and it raises our profile in the community.”
Pinnacle is a general contractor, focusing on the construction of commercial buildings throughout western Kentucky and northwestern Tennessee.
“We have owned several Case machines over the years, including a Case loader/backhoe currently, and have always been pleased with them,” Smith said. “We appreciate the service and support we get from our local Case dealer, McKeel Equipment. They are truly a great equipment provider, and their customer service is second to none. The McKeels also are great supporters of Murray State University.”