Goodfield shoe repairer launches business after layoff

Local News

GOODFIELD, Ill. (WMBD) – David Johnston spends long days on his feet to make sure other people’s feet are taken care of.

“Shoe repair has been part of my life for a long time, since I was 15,” Johnston said.

Johnston opened Goodfield Shoe Repair and Antiques in early July, after being laid off at the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic. He used the experience as a stepping stone for business ownership.

Johnston said, “It’s enjoyable right now in just a month’s growth to see that happen, as somebody who took a chance and you know you’re crossing your fingers.”

“It’s really weird that I like it. And there’s a satisfaction in taking something apart or putting it back together or something that was taken apart or street worn and getting to put that back together and the person’s reaction.”

david johnston

While owning a business may be new to Johnston, entrepreneurship runs in his blood by way of his father. 

“He owned a bakery. I grew up in the bakery as a youngster, washing dishes, panning donuts, doing all kinds of production work, but it was when I got to the shoe repair shop, I really liked it,” he said.

As Johnston grew older, he continued to develop his professional skills while working at an orthopedic and prosthetic company. After facing the layoff, he says the community support has been “amazing”. 

“A lot of my work came from people locally my first month here and they’ve been real supportive.”

While the future may be uncertain, Johnston has a footing on this line of work. 

“This is pretty exciting since—for me. It is long days. It is tiring. I ache like a lot of people, but like a lot of people, we’re going through this thing and I’m here to hopefully save people some money. Everybody’s kind of hurting right now. There’s a lot of people hurting I should say and so there’s some satisfactory there…”

Johnston is looking to add antiques to his shop and also host more community events within the building.

Goodfield Shoe Repair is located at 214 W. Peoria Street.

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