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A Tale Of Two E“ntrepreneurs y Alissa Reinhardf you were to ask the names of some of the Marty was doing so many things that I thought were important and made sense forBI– two would quickly come to mind. First – Billy Joe“Red”McCombs. McCombs is the founder of the Red McCombs Automotive Group in San Antonio, a co-founder of Clear Channel Communications, former owner of the San Antonio Spurs – the list goes on and on. His financial empire includes automobiles, cattle, construction and development, insurance, real estate, telecommunications, sports, oil, and more. He is considered to be San Antonio’s top entrepreneur and the city has been enriched by his innovative business deals and insight.The second individual, a figure more local to the Northwest side of the city, is Charles Martin “Marty” Wender. It can be said that Marty’s vision of the Northwest side’s potential completely shifted the growth of San Antonio from the north, up Highway 281 to the northwest, which only a few decades ago, was completely undeveloped ranch land. His accomplishments to date include the master planned community of Westover Hills, brokering the deal to bring Sea World to San Antonio, the Hyatt Regency Hill Country Resort and Spa, Microsoft Data Center, and many more.Red and Marty developed a friendship in the 1980s, a harrowing time financially, when virtually every major Texas-based bank had either failed or been acquired for pennies on the dollar. Unfortunately, during this same time period, Marty was in the planning stages of developing the Northwest side.“As a business man, your banker is part of your plan, necessary to your development,” stated Red. “But his lender was confiscated by the Federal Reserve, like nearly every other lender in town. I didn’t know Marty well then, I had sold him a tract of land, but I began to see headlines in the paper about how everything was being taken from him in such a ruthless manner. I knew that he was being mistreated. I called him because I wanted to help.”So outraged by the bad publicity his friend was receiving, Red decided to take out an ad in the newspaper, thanking Marty for the good he had done and continued to do for the community.“I ran a half page ad that said something like, ‘Thanks, Marty, for delivering Sea World,’ and I listed the positives he had done for the community,” Red recalled. “I signed the ad, ‘Your Friends.’ He called me at the house, crying, he knew I had run the ad and I told him that I had...and I would run another.”The two men began to bond over Marty’s experience and Red became a mentor to him.“I was happy to do it,”said Red.“Marty was doing so many things that I thought were important and made sense for the area. He was right on top of what was necessary for others to be drawn to build and develop out west and he had the courage and the stamina to stay with it. I admired him and he continued to get better. When he asked my help and advice, I was always happy to contribute. I just thought we were so fortunate to have him come to this city and believe in San Antonio the way he did.”Among Marty’s many business dealings that helped tangibly develop the northwest side, he also made the visit of a very special individual possible to the Alamo City. In 1987, it was announced that thethe area. He was right on top of what was necessary for others to be drawn to build and develop out west and he had the courage and the stamina to stay with it. I admired him and he continued to get better. When he asked my help and advice, I was always happy to contribute. I just thought we were so fortunate to have him come to this city and believe in San Antonio the way he did.” ~ Red McCombsmajor influential figures in the San Antonio areaL-R Author James Michener, Red McCombs, and Marty WenderL-R Red McCombs, Mack Brown and Marty WenderL-R Red McCombs, Dr. Bill Henrich, and Marty Wender enjoying a meal and a laugh.Pope was coming to the United States. Forty acres of donated land was needed for the Papal Mass. At first, Marty didn’t throw his hat in the ring. He wasn’t Catholic and figured it would mean a lot more to someone else to be able to get involved. However, no deal could be reached and discussions began to relocate the Mass to Houston. With only a week left until the deadline, Marty decided to help.“This was to be the people’s Mass,” said Marty. “The small part I played was so I could give this to the people and city of San Antonio. It’s the people that make San Antonio special, and I wanted them to have this.”The grounds were prepared with the utmost attention to detail and security when two days before the Mass was to take place, a massive windstorm devastated the grounds. Marty recruited the builders currently working on constructing SeaWorld, and after working day and night, they were able to restore the area so the Mass could go forward. Half a million people showed up for theMarty WenderRed McCombs2017-2018www.GreatNWGuide.com15Papal Mass, an event that the city will never forget. Marty’s dedication to the city he loves continues to be beyond fruitful for the northwest side, transforming the area to what it is today. Red’s storied tenure as one of the city’s most successful entrepreneurs and his support of Marty’s vision spurred the development along. Both men are partof San Antonio’s history and future.Business Development


































































































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