ACE = thieves (or very bad businessmen)

The ACE Hardware storefront as it was today - with a for lease sign! Yikes!!

ACE is not the place with helpful hardware anyone!!!

It takes a lot and I mean A LOT to make me angry. The only one who usually makes me this angry is my partner but we won’t go there. I make him angry too so it’s even.

On July 29, 2010, I put in a special order for an attic ladder (I have 12ft ceilings, everything is special order) and gave Frank Urbano a $500 deposit with the expectation that the ladder would arrive two weeks after. My contractor kept calling him and he kept giving excuses about delays from the ladder makers.

I called last week and Frank stated that the delays were not with him. I told him that I would be seeking an alternate vendor and he might have to give me my money back if I found someone who could sell me a ladder and deliver. He said to not worry that he would be checking with the company and that he would look for alternate companies to supply him with my order. He promised to call me back that day. He never called. The following day, my contractor called and said Frank’s cell phone was disconnected. Wha.. What??

So I called the day after not thinking much of it and the store office was disconnected. Strange, I thought, but didn’t worry because Ace is a reputable company that had been open in Laredo a long time. My contractor then said he went in person but that Ace was closed in the middle of the day, hmmmm… It was gnawing at me and gnawing at me so today I headed out in person.


There is a !*&^%$ing “For Lease” sign on the building. Pero las cosas no se van a quedar asi. Oh no. Today is El Grito and I am ready to scream.

I saw today’s Pro8News Problem Solver segment about the party place closing up shop and leaving scheduled partiers hanging (No video yet available) but I don’t need Pro8News, I am my own problem solver.

I’ll be visiting Laredo Police Department tomorrow, will be contacting ACE corporate and have already left a message for my lawyer for some guidance. If my deposit is still stuck somewhere in the ACE drawers, then I want it back. If it is with a ladder company somewhere… well, I still want it back.

As for my contractor – sorry buddy, another wait. My only hope is that this is a temporary closing. Maybe Frank is sick or something but nonetheless, I am a customer whose number he had and I want answers.

Peeking in through the window at Ace hardware on McPherson - the inventory looks intact and the cash register was on... hmm... maybe the owner ran away??

UPDATE: My contractor was able to track down Mr. Urbano’s personal cell number and I was finally able to speak to him. I notified him that I had made contact with Ace Corporate but they had not contacted him yet. He tells me it is not his intention to cheat anyone and he understands my concerns because he is closing down his store. He sticks to his reason for the delay, that it is a delay in production from the company and not his store. I will be stopping by later today to get a return of my deposit which is fine by me but not fine for the massive delays in my house. Oh well, at least I can go on to look for another specialty attic ladder seller.

On a VERY sad note – another 20+ year business is leaving Laredo.


About Que Fregados

Que Fregados is a quirky look at little things that strike us funny in Laredo and the unique Latino culture. Suggestions and comments are welcome. You can also email to
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3 Responses to ACE = thieves (or very bad businessmen)

  1. David says:

    Crazy. At least it’s a major chain, so hopefully that makes it easier to get your deposit back. Good luck!

  2. sean bowlin says:

    I’m the business editor at the LMT,would like to do a story on the closure of Ace. Can you give me Urbano’s contact info?


    Sean Bowlin
    LMT Business Editor

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