13If doing the dirty work could win a prize, Jimmy Richards would proudly display a full sized trophy.

As a mechanic at his father’s shop, Woody’s Automotive and Towing in Hawthorne, his experience surpasses most his age.

“I was 13 when I built my first engine. I always took things apart, like most kids do, but I put them back together which was pretty unusual. Working on cars or racing cars is my total interest. I currently have 11 vehicles – too many to drive, but I just can’t seem to sell them. After I work on a vehicle, it’s mine for life. I’ve sold only one and I’ve regretted it.”

In 2002, Richards was the youngest licensed tow truck driver in Nevada at age 16. “My first call was a lockout and I actually liked helping people out.”

Already in his fourth year on the county search and rescue team, he has become the training officer within the group and he is NASAR certified.

Richards explained that growing up in Hawthorne since 1996 has given him a sense of pride for the community. “I have so many memories around here and know practically everyone. It’s been a great place to work and live. My dad (Larry Richards) gave me my first car when I was ten. He said if I could get it to run I could keep it. So I worked on that old Subaru Brat for hours until I finally got it running. I think it surprised my family, but they made good on letting me keep it.”

As a Reno-born kid, Richards still enjoys going back to Reno’s downtown for the “Rockabilly Riot”. This event features the heads-up drag race on city streets, which he competed in and won second place last summer in his 1968 Volkswagen Squareback.

Another aspect of his life is the local Sportsman Association. He competed in the Stillwater Firearm Association’s shooting event in Fallon, enjoying the friendships and competition that’s involved.

“I love working and playing outdoors, or participating in off-road races. This is the perfect place to live and work for all the things I enjoy and am involved in.”

At 29 years old, Richards is a prime example of fun, respect and dedication, plus he has the willingness to literally go “the extra mile” to help someone out.