Manjeet Mangat grew up in Punjab, which is in the northern part of India. His family was well off, and could afford to send him to boarding school. When he was old enough he attended a university in Switzerland. He graduated a master's degree in hotel management and tourism. After graduating he came to Wisconsin to visit family in 2007. He has been working as the manager at his brother’s gas station since then. He has no plans to return to India, especially since he met a woman at the gas station who ended up becoming his wife.
The north side community, where the gas station is located, has the distinction of originally being home to most of the immigrants who settled here between the Civil War and World War I. There are many historic homes and buildings in the area, as well as old churches. It has also been the home to the city’s zoo since 1923. Manjeet also lives on the north side, only four blocks from the station. He sometimes hears people talking about crime. Unfortunately, he has seen crime first hand. There have been customers that have driven away without paying for gas. He doesn’t judge all his customers by the actions of a few.
After several years in Manjeet knows what brand of cigarettes more than 500 people smoke. He recognizes all of his regulars, and even pumps gas for a few older women during the winter. Sometimes he plays Indian folk music behind the counter. When customers walk in he is singing and dancing.
Manjeet has made a positive impression on many people who frequent that gas station, including myself over the last several years. The gas station is located on Main Street, just north of downtown The zoo is located just across the street, and the beach is a block further to the east. This is a prime location which brings many customers and the next closest gas stations are several blocks to the…