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April 24, 2014

Faces of Fauquier: Nomad childhood makes a mover

Photo/Cassandra Brown
A transmission lineman for Dominion Power, Paul Schmeling co-founded moving company as a side job.
By .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address)
Staff Journalist
He works to make moving hassle-free with dedication and a charismatic smile.

Starting Fauquier Moving Co. as a side business seemed natural to Paul Schmeling, who grew up in a military family and knows firsthand how stressful changing homes can be.

“We take pride in coming in and putting everyone at ease and making a stressful situation a pleasant one,” Mr. Schmeling said of the company that he and his wife own with a “silent partner.”

Based in Warrenton, his company will celebrate its second anniversary in July. It serves business and residential clients around the Piedmont.

Passionate about making the community a better place, Mr. Schmeling enjoys the bucolic nature of Fauquier County and live music at a variety of venues in town.

“Fauquier is where the sprawl stops and the country starts,” said the avid traveler, who once ran with the bulls in Pamplona, Spain.

• Age
37

• Home
Town of Warrenton

• Work
Co-owner of Fauquier Moving Co., founded in July 2012; also has worked four years as a Dominion Power transmission linesman, based in Warrenton.

• Why do you do the job?
It’s what I learned to do first. It’s what I was good at. When I wanted to start a business, this is what I knew how to do. I grew up in a military family; my dad was in the Air Force, and we moved every couple of years. So, I know first-hand how stressful moving can be. We take pride in coming in and putting everyone at ease and making a stressful situation a pleasant one.

• Family
Wife, Christen, and son, Noah, 16.

• Education
Fauquier High School, 1995.

• Organizations
Member of the International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers. The Fauquier Moving Co. is part of the trade group, Virginia Movers and Warehousemen Association. I’m a member of the Handsome Hair Club for Men of Fauquier County.

• How long have you lived in Fauquier?
On and off since 1994.

• Why do you live here?
I like being part of the community. I like knowing everyone in town and walking places.

• How do you describe this county?
Fauquier is where the sprawl stops and the country starts.

• What would you change about Fauquier?
Warrenton needs to be more amiable to pedestrians and minors. Warrenton needs more sidewalks. And if there aren’t any on a street, then there should be speed bumps.

• What do you do for fun?
Walk my dogs. I like to go to Whitney State Forest. My wife and I use to do open mic night at Molly’s Irish Pub. I like to go see live music in Old Town at Bluemont summer concerts and Drum & Strum (where his wife works). I like to eat at Claire’s at the Depot, Black Bear Bistro and Hidden Julles Café.

• What’s your favorite place in Fauquier?
I like Old Bust Head Road. I use to run with my dog there; it’s bucolic. Lees Ridge Road; if I had to move out of Warrenton, I would move there.

• What will Fauquier be like in 10 years?
Hopefully it won’t be much different.

• Favorite TV show?

“Queen of Jordan,” “Homonyms” and “TGS”

• Favorite movie?
“Cool Hand Luke”

• Favorite book?
“The World According to Garp” by John Irving.

• Favorite vacation spot?

My idea of a vacation is to stay at home and have family come visit me. I traveled a lot when I was younger. Once, I went to the running of the bulls in Pamplona, Spain. I worked on a freighter in Alaska for three years. I rode my bicycle from Madison, Wisconsin, to Warrenton in 2004. It took about 25 days.

• Favorite food?

My wife’s cooking.

• What is the best advice you have ever received? From whom?
The advice I live by comes from Theodore Roosevelt: “You have to do what you can, with what you have, where you are.”

You can always make your community a better place.

A guy who I worked with on the boat in Alaska told me, “Always leave things better than then way you found them.”

• Who’s your hero and why?
My hero is anyone who does what they know is right, regardless of success or failure.

• What would you do if you won $1 million in the lottery?
I would buy all my closest friends a house so I could spend the money as fast as possible, because if I gave them cash, they would spend it on guitars and motorcycles.

>> Suggest a “Faces of Fauquier” profile subject

Do you know someone who lives in Fauquier County you would like to see in Faces of Fauquier? E-mail Cassandra Brown at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address) or Editor Lou Emerson at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

Previous Faces of Fauquier:

• Adam Lynch’s family owns café with local food focus and a special name.

• Patricia McMahon Rice turns passion for art into her livelihood.

• Cindy D’Ambro works as “director of first impressions” at LFCC.

• Ginger Hilleary leads local literacy organization.

• Farmers with groundhog problems call Rod Kirkpatrick.


• Horses “retire” to work with Jeanne Blackwell.

• Remington cattle farmer Doug Linton loves his home and work.

• Sports central to Robert Glascock’s life’s work.

• For Richard Mast, company ownership started with his summer work as a teenager.

• Bernice Simpson knows northern Fauquier back roads and the people who live along them.

• Eddie Payne has logged 38 years as a volunteer firefighter in Marshall.


• Stephanie Layton turns her lifelong passion for dance into her livelihood.


• Shawn LaRue matches children and adoptive families.


• Biker and psychology major Clif Stroud makes music in a big way.

• Becky Crouch greets lots of visitors.

• She helped blaze trail to equality for black teachers.


• Family and food come first for Marshall pizzeria employee.

• Rural “closeness” of Fauquier appeals to Kansas native

• A “spoke” in the wheel of preservation.

• His job dovetails with passion for hunting

• Veteran educator sees the potential in every child.

• His passions: Fixing cars and helping people


• Habitat ReStore volunteer appreciates Fauquier’s diversity.


• Dad’s example led to new career at Fauquier Hospital.

• He lives and works in a beautiful place.

• The Goldvein firehouse ranks as his favorite place.


• Pretty things everywhere she looks.

• Through scouting, he encourages girls to explore.

• One day, he might run the company.


• FISH volunteer likes to help others.

• She sees the community’s generosity.

• Cop patrols while most people sleep.


• Pastor a constant in Calverton.


• She keeps the courthouse spotless.


• He loves working working outdoors at the park.


• She sees “everyone” at Carousel

• Library assistant works in a “fun place"

• Hat lady sets up shop in Old Town Warrenton
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