The History of Lents Body Shop Inc.

Lents Body Shop was first started in 1968 in the back of a gas station at S.E. 83rd and Foster Road.

The business was initially started by Bill Stephens, who at the time was employed as a painter at Roth and Miller Auto Body & Paint during the day, and was pumping gas at a service station evenings and weekends. While not pumping gas, he started doing small body and paint repairs in the back two service bays.

Shortly thereafter, Al Coyner and Jim Chatelain joined Bill and all three individuals worked collectively together, until business expanded to the point that they officially opened a small independent shop located about 10 blocks away at 9112 SE Woodstock, Portland, Oregon.

Since its location was in the Lents Neighborhood of Portland, Oregon – it was officially named Lents Body Shop.

In 1972, this growing business was incorporated in the State of Oregon, with Bill Stephens as President, Allen Coyner as Secretary/Treasurer, and Jim Chatelain, Vice President.

Business continued to expand, and in July of 1973 they moved again, this time 4 blocks away to a large building located at 8919 S.E. Foster Road.

In addition to customer’s vehicles, they took on insurance work, and added fleet work from new car auto dealers. Continuing to expand, they added truck repairs, and for many years did body repair and paint work for U-Haul.

In late 1973, Al Coyner sold his interest in the company to Bill Stephens, and went to work doing body and paint work for Port Services at the Port of Portland Terminal 4 – doing small repairs on vehicles that had been damaged in transit. However after a short time, he started Coyner’s Auto Body and Paint in St. Johns, Oregon. His son Mike Coyner took over in 1996 and ran the operation until November 2010, when they sold the business.

In 1975, Jim Chatelain also sold his business interest to Bill Stephens, leaving Bill the sole shareholder and owner – operator of Lents Body Shop Inc.

Bill Stephens then managed the business himself, with several employees under him doing the actual auto body and paint repairs.

On January 2, 1979, Randy Dagel was hired as the general manager of Lents Body Shop Inc. – as Bill Stephens had purchased and was operating St. Helens Auto Wrecking in North Portland.

Randy Dagel had moved to Portland from Springfield, Oregon where he previously was employed at Acme Body & Fender – a Porsche and BMW specialty shop. Prior to that, Randy worked at Deano’s Custom Auto Painting in Coquille, Oregon, at Lounsbury Ford in Coquille, Oregon, and for one year at G & G Auto Body in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

Randy learned auto body and painting in 1970 –1972 in Northwest Iowa Vocational School in Sheldon, Iowa. That school is now Northwest Iowa Community College. During his Junior and Senior High School years, Randy attended half days there and half days at Sibley Iowa High School, during which time he also worked swing shift in a dairy creamery, Associated Milk Products Inc.

August 1980 found Lents Body Shop Inc. moving operations once again – this time 4 blocks up the street to 8530 S.E. Foster Road.

Randy Dagel continued employment as general manager of Lents Body Shop Inc., and on January 15, 1985 he bought out Bill Stephen’s interest in the company and became the sole shareholder.


After outgrowing the location at 85th and Foster, it became necessary to find a new home for the company.

Several neighborhood properties were scrutinized, until a dream location came up for sale just 5 blocks away — and in 1999 – a brand new state of the art collision repair facility was built at 9038 S.E. Foster Road – in the heart of the new Lents Town Center Urban Renewal District.

Lents Body Shop Inc. continues to specialize in collision damaged auto body and paint repairs for cars, pickups, and vans.

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Office Phone: (503) 774-7497

9038 S.E. Foster Road, Portland, OR 97266


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