From following ant trails along a scenic Iowa river bank, to catching stink bugs and pranking his siblings; Jerry had no clue he was setting himself for the career path he knows and loves today.
In the year nineteen hundred and ninety, Jerry had only three things to his: A family, a truck and a dream. Freshly coming off of being a dog house builder of all things, he reignited his passion for bugs and nature and set out on a journey that is still being written. He knew there was a better way to pest control than that of what the conglomerate’s could offer. Following his in laws, he set out for Ocala Florida, a place that has no shortage of bugs. Armed with a clunky sprayer and a thousand watt smile, he paved the path of what you see today: The Bug Doctor. For years many have said ‘The American Dream is dead’, and if Jerry had bought into that lie, you would not be reading this today. Of course there were hard times, and times where the business was on the brink of failure, but a strong will and faith can trump any circumstance. If you have a few DAYS to spare, Jerry could sit down and tell you an endless amount of stories from those times past, and even today. Ones that could make your skin crawl, eyes water and ribs hurt from laughter all at the same time. It was tough schlepping to and fro accounts, sometimes being loved or hated, but the love of his family and little creepy crawling guys made it all worth it. It did not start with The Bug Doctor, however. You could say Jerry got a good trial by fire, thrown to the wolves moment when he first started. He met his sweetheart and wife of thirty plus years, Renee, in Baltimore Maryland, where the “city bugs” rule. Some would argue that Florida is the haven for pests and bugs of all kinds, but pests in a metro city are a different breed of bug. Rats the size of small dogs and roaches with seemingly six inch legs gave Jerry a good taste of the industry within his first few days. It was in these moments where the love, though strange to some, was sparked. Every man can relate to the satisfaction that is problem solving, and pest control is no exception. It’s often misinterpreted that a pest control tech is set out to kill all bugs. If that was the case, Jerry would’ve steered clear. His goal was and is to simply let pests know where they are welcome, and where they are not. A few casualties occur in the process, but the end goal is to let them exist and thrive where they are most capable; aka NOT in your home or business!
Jerry and Renee Schappert
Iron sharpens iron, and thats how this business was founded and has thrived. Jerry and Renee founded the Bug Doctor on morals, and have stood for them ever since. Away from the hustle and bustle, Jerry and Renee keep it simple by lounging at their pond, and loving on their granddaughter.
Customer turned Manager, thats the Dianne Buchanan story. Over 8 years she’s blossomed into a true head of the office, and is an invaluable asset to the entire operation.
In it from the near beginning, Kevin has been the ultimate tech and employee. We often joke (even though its the truth) that in fourteen years Kevin has never called in sick! He is a rare breed and we are blessed to have him.
When you’re raised around spiders, roaches and the occasional healthy bee sting, you are destined to be a bug man. Jerry took jared along from the second he could sit in the front seat of his Ford Ranger. It is a true family business, and the torch is being passed through him.