ARTESIA — Scott London spent most of his working life in law enforcement. Now the former Eddy County sheriff has added businessman to his resume.
His first business venture was started last year and that’s called Cycle Funeral Services.
“That actually started in November of last year, I started that right before I left office, I’ve got a motorcycle-drawn hearse,” he said.
He said the design goes back to the days of horse-drawn hearses, “only I’m pulling it with an iron horse.”
“I’ve done several services this year, it’s the big glass windows on the side and when we’re honoring the veterans, it really stands out when you see that flag draped over the casket in there,” London added.
London said motorcycle buffs are his most popular clients and he said he has done services for people who didn’t want to go in a traditional hearse.
London’s original thought was to have a horse-drawn hearse, however reality set in for him.
“The motorcycle-drawn hearse just seemed a little more practical, I enjoy motorcycle riding and we didn’t have the property or the space for the horses (and) a motorcycle doesn’t require feeding when I’m not riding it and I have a motorcycle I can ride when I’m not working,” he said.
Last week London and his wife, Michelle, started another business venture in Artesia. London Company Jewelers is located at 112 S. Fifth St. in downtown Artesia.
The jewelry business isn’t foreign to London or his wife. He said Michelle has 10 years of experience in the jewelry design business.
“She designed my wedding ring,” he said.
London added that his father-in-law has decades of experience in the jewelry business as well.
“He will be doing a lot of our backshop, he’ll be doing our repair and metal work. He does the casting for many of the designs that we’re doing,” London said.
Why open a jewelry shop in Artesia?
“Carlsbad has four jewelry stores and Artesia has not had one since Kilpatrick’s shut his doors five or six years ago,” London said.
“There was a bit of a vacuum here (and) let’s face it, Artesians tend to partonize their own community as best as possible,” London added.
The location for London’s shop has seen many businesses over the decades.
“We gave it a complete facelift,” London said. “When we bought it, it had big white stripes on the walls, we had to put in the handicap ramp.”
London added that the building and the adjacent parking lot are separate properties.
“We’re renting both the building we’re in and we’re renting the parking lot,” he said. “Once people find out that we’re here, it gives us a little bit of an advantage of Main street, because Main Street has so much streetside parking, where we have dedicated parking.”
London said he and his family had been working since February to get the store up and running. “We’re 10 months of preparation getting to today.”
During his law enforcement days, London didn’t think he would be in the retail business. He said his wife wondered why anyone would want to be self-employed.
“She thought going into business for yourself was a foolish thing to do and it’s not anything we’d ever dream of doing,” he said. “But, here we are.”
London said the new challenge, “has been fun. We had our stressful moments, I’ve been looking forward to it.”
London said he enjoys the challenges of new ventures.
“I had been a cop for almost 20 years when I ran for sheriff (and) politics is completely different than law enforcement and the last four or five years my law enforcement experience had a completely different twist with the political aspect of it,” London said.
He added, “I enjoyed the politics and this is another new venture, I get excited about doing new things.”
London Company Jewelers is open Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. and they will be offering military and first-responder discounts.
General assignment reporter Mike Smith can be reached at 575-622-7710, ext. 307, or at firstname.lastname@example.org.