From 1969 to 1974, while most children were off summers swimming, camping and playing, Jesse Jr. continued working and assisting in supporting the family. Childhood friends would joke with Jesse Jr. with remarks like “You’re probably going to get a spray gun for Christmas”. Though at the time he probably would have enjoyed taking part in the summertime activities other teenagers were, to this day, he feels that the work ethic instilled in him during that time is responsible for the company’s success today.
During the 60’s Jesse moved his company and family to San Antonio. In 1964, his youngest child and only son, Jesse M. Cantu, Jr., began working weekends and summers learning the trade with the hands-on approach his father was so fond of. At nine years-old, Jesse Jr. worked side by side with the painters, sanding at first, then caulking and puttying and finally culminating as a painter 1968 at the age of 12.
In 1974, following his graduation from Harlandale High School, Jesse Jr. began working for HB Zachry as a painter. His first assignment was in Egypt’s Sinai Desert. He would go on to work on numerous chemical plants throughout Texas before leaving Zachry and starting his own company in 1981.
Jesse M. Cantu & Son Painting Company was born and Jesse Jr's mentor, his father was back in the picture assisting in day to day operations. The main focus of the company at the time was painting new homes, primarily for Ray Ellison.
In 1985, Jesse Jr’s first taste of the commercial market would come during the construction of Sea World of Texas. The stay would last until 1988 and his notable project to date would conclude his stay. The main entrance Marquee Arches were his largest and most notable project. He would employ all of the training from both his father and Zachry to sandblast & apply high performance coatings to complete the project by working two shifts around the clock.
In 1999, after serving in the US Army’s 82nd Airborne Division, a third generation Cantu, Jesse M. Cantu, III joined the Paradise team and began working side by side with father Jesse Jr.. The company continued to grow as Jr. taught the III the very values the company was based on. In 2004 Paradise Painting became Paradise Painting, Inc. and the rest is history.
Following his tour in World War II with the 25th Infantry Division, Jesse M. Cantu established himself as J.M. Cantu Painting Contractor in Laredo, Texas. For over a decade he thrived in the industry working in both the residential and commercial markets.
In 1993 the company’s name changed to Paradise Painting. Jesse Jr. would go on to establish the company we know today by treating each customer & project with special care.