Fast-talking, quick-dealing couple Dan and Laura Dotson have taken the auction world by storm since joining the cast of the popular A&E series Storage Wars. The pair, who run the dramatic auctions on the show, first met in 1996 and have forged their careers on the auction circuit.
But there’s more to Laura and Dan than just quick slogans and catchphrases. This is a couple that has fought together to overcome a handful of career and health obstacles and found success despite the barriers in their collective path. Now, they’re back for yet another season of Storage Wars. Here’s what you need to know about the Dotson pair and don’t forget to pay the lady:
1. Dan Learned How to Auctioneer From His Grandfather
Dan first learned how to auctioneer from his grandfather, Sam Fancer, who was a cattle and farm auctioneer in the Ozark Mountains. Fancher also worked as an apprentice auctioneer by Detmen Mitchell in 1945.
When he turned 11 years old, Dan started working full-time with his grandfather at auctions during the summer and when he turned 16 he left school to work at the Chin auctions in California. Eventually Dan became a successful auctioneer in his own right and started to specialize in collectibles, pottery, porcelain dolls and furniture auctions.
2. Dan & Laura Met in 1996
The couple first met in 1996 when Laura came to one of Dan’s auctions to bid on restaurant equipment and were married shortly thereafter. Laura told the Huffington Post, it was love at first sight as soon as she saw Dan work:
I found the right man because I am very high-energy. When I saw him auctioneering all over the place, I thought, ‘I’m going to marry that man!’ That was it! We just looked at each other, said ‘Let’s get married, I’ll snatch you up,’ and the rest is history. Four months later, I was pregnant — the whole doggone thing! We work well together. He’s taught me how to auction and it’s the best thing that’s ever happened in my life.
Dan and Laura entered into the auction business after they tied the knot and have been working together for nearly 20 years, including their successful stint on Storage Wars. Of course, the role on the popular reality series has helped drive the pair’s private business and even some of the off-screen drama, including a reported brawl with fellow castmate Dave Hester, has lent itself to the pair’s popularity.
3. The Couple Own American Auctioneers
Dan founded American Auctioneers in 1983 and ran the company as an auction house in Riverside during the 1980’s and 1990’s. When he and Laura got married, the company expanded and now includes auctions on everything from estates to business inventories and appraisals.
The company holds auctions across the country and has now even expanded to online auctions as well. Dan and Laura announced the expansion recently, releasing the following statement:
We would like to thank all of our loyal customers and fans for making
American Auctioneers what it is today. We have really enjoyed meeting and working with you
and we’re looking forward to many more years together. Stay tuned for the launch of our online
auction listings and don’t forget to pay the lady.
4. Laura Has Worked As An Auctioneer For 14 Years & Speaks Four Languages
Laura has been working as an auctioneer in her own right for more than a decade and she handles all aspects of the couple’s company American Auctioneers, helping it grow from 250 auctions a year to over 2,500 today.
She also speaks Lebanese, Christian Arabic and Italian.
Laura has developed her own persona while working auctions, using a more distinct filler word system and her chant sounds slightly slower than her husband’s.
5. Dan Suffered a Double Aneurysm in 2014
On June 16, 2014, Dotson suffered a double aneurysm, waking up in the middle of the night asking what Laura described as “weird questions.” Dan then started complaining of double vision several hours later and collapsed while trying to get out of bed.
Laura immediately called 911 and may have even saved her husband’s life when she administered CPR in their home. When paramedics arrived, Dan was given less than a 20 percent chance to live. Doctors discovered that Dan had one aneurysm behind his eye and a second one, the size of an apricot, on his neck. Laura tweeted this out after Dan’s surgery:
Dan made a full recovery, defying the medical odds, and rejoined the Storage Wars cast this season.