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Airgas, Inc. (NYSE: ARG), one of the largest U.S. suppliers of industrial, medical, and specialty gases, and welding, safety, and related products, today reaffirmed its commitment to Operation Homefront, a charity that supports America’s troops by providing emergency assistance and moral support to the family members left behind when they are deployed and to wounded service members when they return home.
Airgas Executive Chairman Peter McCausland and Airgas President and CEO Mike Molinini presented Operation Homefront President and CEO Jim Knotts with a $100,000 donation today. An additional $100,000 donation will be made during 2013.
“We began our close relationship with Operation Homefront in 2008 with financial support and with support from thousands of Airgas associates throughout the country,” said McCausland. “Our military community makes tremendous sacrifices every day on behalf of us all. Now and throughout the holidays is a great time to think about how much our troops have given to this country and thank them for their dedicated service. We are proud to help support Operation Homefront and our troops.”
Today marks Airgas’ fifth year of support for Operation Homefront and its fifth $100,000 donation.
“Airgas associates have really embraced Operation Homefront since the very beginning of this relationship,” added Molinini. “They’ve become involved in local events and fundraisers, from bake sales, food drives, and 5K walks to raffles and even recycling aluminum can pull tabs. We are very proud of our associates’ efforts that add even more to our connection with Operation Homefront.”
In 2008, Airgas announced a $300,000 pledge to be paid in increments of $100,000 per year over three years, with 70 percent going toward Operation Homefront's projects to assist wounded soldiers. At that time, Airgas also set a goal to hire 100 veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan service in the following 12 months, and began offering the Airgas “Welding 101” course to any veteran of Iraq and Afghanistan service interested in exploring a career in welding. Airgas met its $300,000 pledge in 2010 and then extended its commitment for another year and another $100,000. Since 2008, Airgas has hired more than 400 veterans and continues to offer Welding 101 training to veterans.