Schilling Left Big Britton Legacy
Hugh Schilling, chairman of the board of Horton Holding, Inc., has passed away at the age of 95, leaving a legacy in Britton and the surrounding area that will continue for years to come.
Schilling died peacefully at his home in Fountain Hills, AZ, last week Tuesday.
“Horton has been a stable employer and partner in the community for nearly half a century,” said Britton mayor Clyde Fredrickson. “Their commitment and contributions to the area community go far beyond just providing stable jobs for many area residents. They have invested heavily in the Britton area and their generous contributions to several area charities and community projects have made a huge and positive impact.”
Following high school, Schilling served in World War II from 1943-46, flying missions over Japan and working fire-control gun turrets on a B-29. He started Horton, Inc., a private
family-owned manufacturer of engine cooling systems based out of Minneapolis, MN, in 1951 after purchasing the assets of Horton Manufacturing Co., Inc. In 1974 Schilling constructed a 14,000 square foot manufacturing facility in Britton and by mid-1975 there were 16 employees. Today the Britton facilities have over 150,000 square feet and employ over 150 people.
Schillings’ commitment to Britton is evident in the investments he made in the community. The Britton Swimming Pool, Britton Public Library, Hugh K. Schilling Football/Track Complex, multiple care and wellness facility improvements, and most recently the Britton Area Event Center were all spurred on by his generosity.
His legacy also extends far beyond Britton. His persistence, engineering skills, and business acumen led Horton to become a global leader in the manufacturing of engine cooling systems serving a variety of markets. He was a true entrepreneur, holding 21 patents, and he enjoyed sharing his business experience by sponsoring mentorships and educational partnerships over the years.
Schilling was also a dedicated civic leader and philanthropist, sharing his knowledge and support on a number of company and non-profit boards.