After high school I went into the Marine Corps and a had a friend that went into the HVAC trade. After my time in the service I took a part time gig doing building maintenance. At one point the A/C was not working so I grabbed my tools and meter, went on the roof, called my buddy and he helped me troubleshoot the unit. This happened a couple of times, so I decided to get into the HVAC field.
I knew a salesman for a Trane distributor, and he gave my the number to a really great Commercial HVAC company. Was hired the day of my interview as a parts chaser. Since I had my own tools they would send me on simple PM's and service calls as well. Then got promoted to junior tech (glorified parts chaser, LOL).
Left that company for an inside sales job at a supply house. Later became the manager. Resigned from that job after 5 years to go to school for my engineering degree.
I now go to school full time and work building maintenance/HVAC part time until I finish my degree. Old boss said he will hire me as his mechanical engineer once I am done.