When a person jumpers in front of a moving car to meet their future wife, that’s called commitment. That’s exactly what happened with Nick Killibrew back in 2014 whenever he met marketing major Kaitlyn Fickle. When asked about their less than normal meeting, Nick said, “ I jump in the way of her pretty much…safely and all the sudden I see this beautiful blonde girl in the front and I think ‘who is that’ and the coolest part to me is that we’ve never met. Like we didn’t grow up together or go to school together. So this was the first time I had ever seen her and I was like: ‘oh my gosh who is that?”
At first, Kaitlyn was confused, but Nick won her over in the end. She said, “ All of the sudden this kid just jumps in the back of the vehicle and I looked back. I didn’t even know this guy. He was so nice and so friendly. Then somewhere along the line we started dating but initially I was like: ‘ who is this guy?”
As 2014 passed, both college students found themselves in Garrett Hall, furthering their education as marketing majors. This helped Nick to find out what he wanted to do for the rest of his life. “ I just really had this gut feeling that I would create something of my own. I never ever thought it would be clothing like t-shirts or anything because you’d think it’s such a saturated market, it’s a multi-billion dollar industry. Good luck.”
T-shirts. That was the dream. Once the two students graduated, married and began a life in Hammond, America, that’s when the dream started to take flight as a local Hammond Business now known as “Pirogue. And Co. which features the Louisiana Blue Crab. Nick said:” The crab seemed like the perfect icon to do that with.I wanted to do something along the same lines of vineyard vines did, creating such a cool logo that’s simplistic and a name that’s not directly associated but that’s very similar… the Pirogue boat is the state boat and I thought the name just paired so well.”
The company is thriving.Nearing close to its two year anniversary, Pirogue and Co. has sold merchandise in 32 different states, including Alaska. “ Louisiana is a state with such rich culture and history, so there is so much to pull with the color schemes and seasons. Whether you lived here, moved here, or you’ve been here on vacation, everyone feels a tie to Louisiana. So when they see that Mardi Gras or streetcar product or something that reminds them of Louisiana, they just want to hold on to it. “ Kaitlyn Killibrew said.
Even with COVID-19, this little Hammond Business lives on and grows in popularity by the day. And these two Southeastern Graduates live on in their green and gold legacy.