Video by Allyson Morin, Article by Matt Benedetti
Dan Gallagher placed the two black Dunkin Donuts medium regulars on the table, removed the cover of one and glanced at his phone.
“Excuse me, it’s a customer, I need to take this,” he said, leaving the steaming cup to take the call outside on the frigid January morning.
After a few moments, the owner of Dan’s Rubbish Removal and Dumpster Rental returned to his seat.
“Sorry, that was a real estate agent, he needs a ‘can’ today,” said Gallagher, referring to a dumpster.
The 34-year-old Worcester resident carefully logged the information into a worn notebook.
“I get back to my customers right way,” said the former Marine over a now lukewarm coffee. “They are counting on me.”
Another busy day has begun for the Operation Iraqi Freedom veteran turned entrepreneur and he wouldn’t have it any other way.
“I love to work hard and help people,” he said.
This particular client was clearing out a relative’s home for sale. He needed a 15-yard dumpster delivered as soon as possible to avoid delaying the real estate transaction. Gallagher promised to deliver the ‘can’ by the end of the day.
“Dan does what he says he is going to do. He honors his commitments with no surprises,” said Russ Haims of Hampton Properties LLC., a Worcester based real estate firm.
Haims, a real estate professional with 30 years of experience, is aware of the variables involved in any transaction.
“There are so many levels from the beginning to the end and things don’t always go as planned and time is critical. Dan is consistent, reliable and professional and someone I don’t need to worry about. Having that certainty and reliability in your arsenal is so important,” he said.
Like many veteran entrepreneurs, Gallagher took a different path to entrepreneurship.
At 19-years-old, he demonstrated promise in the real estate business flipping homes for sale, however, Gallagher’s sights turned to serving his country. At 20 years old, the Dublin, Ireland native enlisted in the U.S. Marines.
“I knew that if I didn’t serve my country, I would always regret it,” he said.
In a career that started as a recruit at Parris Island and ultimately led him to the dust, debris and danger of Camp Fallujah, Iraq, Dan fulfilled his obligation to his adopted country and is satisfied with his decision.
“It was difficult but rewarding time and I met some lifelong friends that I still see today, ” he said.
One of those friends is Matt Couture, a fellow lance corporal who served with Gallagher. The pair were members of TOW Platoon (Anti-Tank Missile) Headquarters Company, 25th Marine Regiment in Iraq during 2005-2006.
Couture recalls Gallagher as a good friend and great Marine.
“We were always close and I knew he always had my back,” said Couture.
Their seven-month tour began over a pint of Guinness at Shannon Airport in Ireland en route to a place making daily headlines. Deployed to Camp Fallujah, the pair manned entry points, performed perimeter security and guarded a nearby pump house among other roles.
“Dan has a great situational awareness and is always so steady,” said Couture. “We could always count on Dan and I’m sure his customers feel the same way.”
Many of his customers share this sentiment.
Jim Anketell, a partner with JAC Designer Services, hired Gallagher for many projects for his attention to detail and trustworthiness.
“We are a small, busy window treatment installer and generate a fair amount of trash. Meeting Dan was one of the best things to happen to me because he takes the stress away from part of my job,” said Anketell. “He is one of the most conscientious people I have ever meet his attention to detail, positive attitude and timeliness make doing business with him a pleasure. I would recommend him and his rubbish removal business to anyone. He is a step above in all aspects of customer service,” he said.
Gallagher’s company continues to grow in the Worcester area he loves servicing.
“Due to all of the construction, there has been an increased demand for our services,” said Gallagher. “The people in Worcester are great and like working with someone local.”
The husband, father, Marine and business owner is committed to providing his customers with reliable, professional and timely service.
“My customers allow me to take care of my family and I make sure that I take care of them,” said Gallagher.
He took a sip of the now cooled coffee, glanced at his buzzing phone and said, “Excuse me again, it’s a customer, I need to take this.”
Gallagher headed to the door, waved goodbye and was off to serve his customers.
Dan’s Rubbish Removal and Dumpster Rental can be reached at 508-796-5096 and at dansrubbush.com.