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When Real Life And Retail Collide

Picture this scenario: you’re a successful furniture and mattress retailer with a thriving staff and you’re well known in your community. Life is good. 


Then you get the infamous diagnosis you weren’t expecting. Cancer. 


Maybe it’s you, your spouse, or your child. What do you do when real life interrupts your business? Today, we sat down with Trent Ranburger, owner of Trent Bedding in Bowling Green, Kentucky, at the Furniture Today Bedding Conference to talk through this exact situation. We discuss how your worldview shifts and how you’re forced to rely on the staff you built and hope you have invested in them well. We discuss how day-to-day activities change and in the days after how your focus as a business owner changes.


People don’t connect with us in the good times, they connect with us in times of adversity and challenges and when times are toughest for us. …We can’t lose sight of that.”

FULL TRANSCRIPT

Mark Kinsley 

So the story the story the story you haven’t heard behind the scenes with Trent ranneberger you. If you open up LinkedIn right now the first person you’re probably going to see is to remember it happens all the time with me like open up your phone on LinkedIn is Trent Ramberg. Well, yeah, the dose Marco show begins in 30 seconds. Trent this is your first furniture today bedding coffee. Welcome. I feel like the world needs you to be at every event. Why are you not at every event?

Trent Ranburger 

Oh, that would be so much fun. It’s so much fun. I’ve had such a great time. This is my first bedding conference. And thanks to furniture today, Jessica. Everybody. That’s a fantastic event. Thank you guys. Hey, man,

Mark Quinn 

we’re happy to have I don’t know what you’re thinking as far but I’m gonna take it.

Mark Kinsley 

This is the only man that I’ve seen so far. I’m sure there are others in Florida that I’ve seen back to back Flamingo shirts. Yesterday, you know what is day three? Hold for it.

Trent Ranburger 

I mean, it depends on what you want. I have another Flamingo shirt.

Mark Quinn 

Three. You might be the only man in America with three from lingo shirts.

Mark Kinsley 

Oh, somebody out there saying three.

Trent Ranburger 

I mean, we won’t talk about the socks or the underwear.

Mark Quinn 

For sure he does have flamingos

Mark Kinsley 

in it. All right. So I’m happy you’re here. Trent. I know that you every once in a while see you driving in your Jeep. Heading to the lake trying to relax and unwind a little bit because the past, you know, gosh, a year at least has been a crazy journey for you. And I had the privilege last night of being able to have dinner with you and with Tiffany. Yep. Who’s Who’s your significant other your girlfriend? And she had you got to tell us the story and tell people what you’ve been through and talk about the community and talk about the team at Trent bedding, because I think these stories don’t get told often enough about what happens in people’s lives. And I’ve been there a little bit for your journey. And I just think it’s something people need to hear.

Trent Ranburger 

You know, as crazy. Once I said he’s gonna make me cry. I know he’s gonna make me present to me to dinner.

Mark Kinsley 

We got something something Yeah.

Trent Ranburger 

Stat. No. So back last summer, I would say July ish. My girlfriend Tiffany was diagnosed with stage four head and neck cancer. And like from limp nose, tongue, palate, jaw ear. It was bad, it is bad. And so or months, like, literally, I’ve lived in the hospital with her since October, basically. So it’s been it’s been a wild ride. And but she’s made it that’s the that’s what’s so crazy and blessing and a miracle shows you God’s real. I don’t know if we can talk about that on here. But anyway, we can talk about anything we want. Good deal. So Ben, I mean, we I got to start this all over, when it when it all first started. And of course they said okay, you’re gonna start getting phone calls and appointments from oncology, radiation, and surgery. Long story short, we finally make it to the surgeon and he was like, yeah, no, we’re not doing surgery. He said there’s four ways to cure it with radiation or chemo, chemo and radiation, chemo, radiation and surgery, we’re keeping that one in our pocket. He said, because if I do surgery, I’m gonna take at least half to three quarters of your tongue, and pretty much the left side and reconstructive. So her choice? Yeah, he didn’t even give us an option. It was we’re not doing this. But months and months and months of chemo or radiation, and hospital stays honest to goodness she is PET scan clear of cancer. Wow. It’s crazier. It’s a miracle. It’s a miracle. Now the problem is the chemo and radiation, as the doctor in Louisville said, confused her body. So our blood is attacking itself. Right. So now we’ve got the blood issue that we have to keep in check. But she’s good. She’s healthy. And we’re here and thank you. Thank you all. I mean, it’s a blessing to even be here.

Mark Kinsley 

Yeah, I know. I remember talking to her last night. And I was I was lucky enough to sit right beside her. And of course, I had a million questions. Because I know about her journey a little bit. And just what you described with the blood issue. She said that I think in Bowling Green, she had 24 blood transfusions and they weren’t working in her blood. She said her body was confused. And then she had 10 blood transfusions that dealt with just removing the platelets, I guess. Yeah, it was on her body. Yeah. And on the on the 10th one, the doctor said we’re done doing this. And then what happened?

Trent Ranburger 

Their blood stayed fine. Like she’s started eating her bloods like miraculously because, and she did have 20, some in Bowling Green and then a little over total over 40 units of blood that she has taken. And literally, her counts would go up that day. The next morning, bam, gone.

Mark Quinn 

So Trent, like the the path you’ve been on, like the journey, talk to us about, like, what it’s meant for you to have the people inside of trim betting and the people in your community because you’ve done a great job of building a connection to the people live in your town. And of course a coach, you’ve created a trend betting what has happened as a result, like, what’s going on? And what does it mean to you?

Trent Ranburger 

I’m blessed. Yeah, I am way blessed for the men and women at the store. Like without them. I mean, I’m not here. I’m not physically here today. And I mean, they’ve kept rocking and rolling. I can’t, you know, it was like, I don’t know, it’s crazy. Like, every day, we’re still open and have been for months. Now. I’m back. Watch out. But no, I mean, it’s it’s, it’s been

Mark Quinn 

a summer has been reaching out to you. I haven’t

Trent Ranburger 

been real public about Yeah, but on social media with some posted stuff, but I haven’t really, I don’t want to use that now, you know, so to speak. And I don’t want any my everything I did. Yeah.

Mark Kinsley 

And the only reason we wanted to talk about is I see what you’re saying. Yeah. And I’m sure that people that do know about it, you know, they tend to reach out, I wanted to bring the story forward. Because I know many people in our industry have had tragic life situations, whether it be cancer or something else that have taken them out of the store for longer periods of time and you find out your team is great, you find out your community helps you out. And all these things start to stack up and add up. And I wonder, you know, we’ve talked about this offline a little bit whenever your pattern gets interrupted. And in this case, your pattern of being in the store or being on TV is completely interrupted. Your pattern of my girlfriend is healthy is was interrupted. When patterns are interrupted new worlds emerge. What are some of the new thoughts or the new recognitions that you’ve had over the past few months?

Trent Ranburger 

I recognise what’s really important in life, and it’s not necessarily working money, or anything of that nature. Just making sure your family’s good. They’re healthy, and being with them while you can. And you know, with cancer, any cancer. Yes, it’s gone. She’s clear. But we all know I mean, I could walk out of here right now and get hit by a bus. Right? We come back back, quit, it’s time to start living. I mean, like Matthew McConaughey said it’s time to start li vi M will start living

Mark Kinsley 

JK, oh, man.

Trent Ranburger 

You know, but it’s time to really focus on what is truly important. Me. I love my clients, a little more customers. I love helping people sleep better health and wellness. And I’m all about that. I want to continue that. But it’s also all about staying home song being with her. Taking like she’s she came down here with me, you know, so just just being able to do that. But it really put it put life in perspective. And very humbling. Very, very humbling. But here we are. And I haven’t cried yet.

Mark Kinsley 

Yeah. Well, you just wait. I’m about

Trent Ranburger 

to challenge

Mark Kinsley 

Well, last night at dinner, you know, I started tearing up and then the waterworks were turned on for you. And then you told me it was my fault.

Trent Ranburger 

It was his fault.

Mark Quinn 

There was a table next next next to you guys. I’m glad I didn’t know I

Trent Ranburger 

was so crying so much. I just had to go I’m sorry. Public in public, it was his fault.

Mark Quinn 

Mark. I’ll never forget when I was writing a blog at leggett and Platt, I tried to quit the blog so many times. And Kinsley wouldn’t let me he’s like, No, you’re gonna keep writing the blog. But one of the things he coached me on, I was uncomfortable writing about my personal experiences, because I’m like, no one wants to hear any of that crap. And then in something happened to me, and I was debating on sharing it and his comment was, people don’t connect with us. In the good times. They connect with us in times of adversity in the times that we’re challenged in the times that are the hardest for us. And so I’m sure that that is true for you in this situation. 100% like people have connected to you and you probably have felt a serious outreach from those.

Trent Ranburger 

I really haven’t you were talking about the public earlier. Yeah, no, I haven’t like made it hugely public. But yes. To your answer. Yes. Yeah. It’s like, touching. Oh, stop calling him to make you.

Mark Kinsley 

Well, we were tag teaming you now.

Mark Quinn 

We’re grateful for you because of what you do what you do in your market, what you do for the people in your business. Our heart goes out to you, thank you and your whole family and everyone involved in, man. Just keep keep on keeping on and keep putting that that personal relationship with the people you love at the front and centre of everything. And this is a good lesson and a good reminder for everyone.

Yeah, I mean, it really is. Don’t Don’t forget where you came from. Don’t forget who got you there. And don’t forget who you’re with. Amen. And I just came up with that. That sounded really good. I might put them on a shirt.

Mark Kinsley 

I just came up with that trademark. Yeah, he’s, he’s already bought the doctor URL. He’s

Trent Ranburger 

ahead of the game. But now you know, you’re right. We’re very all of us. We’re very blessed to wake up every day and do what we do. I mean, that’s right. I mean, we have Yeah, we’re, we sail beds. No. It’s health and wellness. We’re taking care of people. That’s right. We’re helping people be more healthy by sleeping. And there’s, that’s, that’s that’s the point. So thank you guys. Yes, you all are helping spread the word, not just through the industry and making the industry people understand how important it is. But you’re even reaching out further to customers have anybody city bedding store? You’d bring credibility to Why buy a mattress? Because it’s not just I need a new mattress. You bring it you bring it? You bring the credibility for us small retailers to say no, no, no pill wellness, like, there’s so many things you all do. So thank you all. Yeah,

Mark Kinsley 

hey, man, we, you know, it’s, it’s interesting, after, you know, way more than 300 episodes of this show, that’s crazy. We have to, we have to show our heart like you’re gonna know who we are, we can’t hide. And that’s why I wanted to bring you on to to share more of your heart. Because I think it’s important for people to know each other and, and to be more connected. As we get more connected, we’re able to amplify that message you were talking about to a greater degree, right, which is, you know, we are in the health and wellness business. And somebody asked me last night here at the conference, you know, got into town, some people play golf yesterday, and we went out to dinner last night, and we’re having a drink after dinner. And somebody said, Well, you could take this passion you have to other industries, like why don’t you do that? And I’m like, Well, how many other industries allow you to promote something that changes somebody’s life. It’s where you spend a third of your life. It’s where you share your most intimate moments, like, what other category can you do that? I’m like, I just wouldn’t, I can’t imagine what it is because it doesn’t exist. So that purpose and that meaning behind it, for me is such a big deal. And I know it is for you. I know it is for you. I know it is for Scott Smalling who’s sitting right beside us. And so let’s always be reminded of that. And I think when I hear your story, it reminds you of what matters in your life. And for us in this industry, we have to constantly remind ourselves about what matters.

Trent Ranburger 

Thank you. Thank you. I have your 100 present one resume.

Mark Quinn 

Thank you very good.

Mark Kinsley 

The real question is, like, if you see on camera, if you’re watching the video, there’s a couple sitting behind us who have no idea how famous or I don’t know what they’re told to make some guesses about what they’re talking about.

Trent Ranburger 

He said, Look, I’ve got the chicken. He says that the chicken you’re trying to chicken. You want the chicken sandwich?

Mark Kinsley 

Salad and grapes in it.

Trent Ranburger 

I’m telling you, I’m gonna leave you don’t eat the chicken. Why you’re making me the chicken. Chicken. He’s like

Mark Kinsley 

he got it on sourdough. He doesn’t like

Trent Ranburger 

the chicken. He is serious. We’re going here.

Trent Ranburger 

She says, don’t you? Me with your hand. You realise

Trent Ranburger 

don’t make this about public. No, we better stop everybody.

Mark Quinn 

Before this really derails man, we better go train. Thanks, brother.

Mark Kinsley 

Thanks for Thanks for sharing. You too, man. Hey, Tiff. We’re just so happy that you are such a fighter and see your family and to everybody that supported you. Thank you for that. I just honoured to be able to meet her and spend some time and we’re honoured to be able to spend some time with you. Hey, you’re loosening out of the does Marcos universe. We’re glad that you’re part of the fam. If you have a story that touched you here that is personal. The most active man on LinkedIn would probably love if you would connect with them. Give us a thumbs up or a like or subscribe and be sure you go over to fam dot news and do subscribe there to get our newsletter each and every week. Trent’s bound to turn up in that again.

Mark Quinn 

It’s a campfire, invite your friends, we want everybody to participate. Until next time, Trent be well. Love you Rosa. The man

Trent Ranburger 

love you guys

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