|Curley Randle not only shines, but repairs
shoes at Mighty Fine Shoe Repair
|New patrons of Mighty Fine Shoe Repair, 1400
South Victory, are finding out what older customers have known for a long time - repairing
shoes are a lot cheaper than replacing them. Long time shoe repairman Curley Randle not
only repairs both men and women shoes and boots, but he offers extra services such as
dying, shining, waxing and glazing.
But, he doesnt do this all by himself. He has in his employ, his daughter Alanea
Larkin, and Ernest Cigar Wilbert who has been shining shoes for 30 years. The
shop relocated six months ago, from South Lane and Wheatley, a location it had been in for
At a young age Randle who was born in 1944, became interested in the trade known as
shoe shining. In the 50s and 60s, this was very popular and he would go to the
parlor in his neighbor hood just to watch the men shining shoes. After graduating from
Booker T. High School, Randle sought to learn more so he could master his trade. Although
over the years, he learned by watching the masters he went to Barbara Jordan
Community College in 1989, where they were offering classing in this trade. My
instructor was Mark Reagan. He did a very good job in encouraging me and teaching me how
to repair shoes, said Randle.
Randle started shining shoes with his brother at different car dealerships in Houston.
They would go and set up inside the lobby everyday and ask the salesmen if they wanted
their shoes shined. They reasoned that since they were on their feet everyday, they needed
to make sure that their shoes were in good condition to sell cars. After working there for
sometime they asked permission to shine the shoes of customers waiting on their cars.
Randle began to move his business to different places in downtown Houston, shining the
shoes of businessmen and women who either worked there or was just passing through.
He still does this at Duke Energy, the 3DI building, and US Home. In addition, many people
throughout Houston choose to drop their shoes off to be repaired. Mayor Lee Brown,
recently had a pair of his shoes brought in to to be fixed.
Randle continued, I want to offer a good service and a fair price. I want my service
to be a repeat service and create a certain ambiance. I want my business to be to the
place that when you think of shoe repair, youll think of Mighty Fine Shoe
Repair, said Randle who is the father of two children, Alanea Larkin and Kirkland
Randle. Mighty Fine Shoe Repair is opened Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from 9:30
a.m. to 6:00 p.m. It is also open on Wednesday from 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m. and on Saturday
from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. Call 281/ 448-9255 for more information.