Ralph Meloon was co-owner of the family business Correct Craft, a pleasure-boat manufacturing company. After a series of struggles in their contract with the U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, the company finally was pushed into bankruptcy when an inspector refused to approve an entire shipload of boats. The government inspectors’ measures were meant to thwart a company whose principles prohibited bribes, and had already created significant costs by sending boats back to the factory for reworking. Though a court canceled 80 percent of their company’s debt, the Meloon brothers knew that they had to repay every cent anyway. Thus, over the course of 18 years, they tracked down each one of their 228 creditors and paid off their debts. Walter Meloon even was convicted to forgive the government inspector. Their actions were a witness to several of what running a business God’s way truly entailed. This interview between Ralph Meloon and Ron Blue walks through some of the challenges and details of that time in Ralph Meloon's life.
How many companies can say that they have had someone working with them for over 80 years? Correct Craft can. Ralph Meloon was 7 years old when his dad, W.C. Meloon, founded Correct Craft in the water sports industry in 1925, and he started work soon after that. Ralph has seen Correct Craft experience a variety of experiences over the years, including surviving through the Great Depression, playing an important role in the United States victory over Germany in WWII, working through bankruptcy in the 1960’s and developing innovation after innovation which have improved the water sports industry. Ralph has also played a key role in Correct Craft’s success and has traveled the world representing the company.