July '20

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38 • RV PRO • July 2020 RV PRO SPECIAL SECTION Good Deeds Amid COVID-19 LaVanture Provides Masks and PPE to First Responders, Others In early March, having two special needs children of their own, LaVan- ture Products Co. President Richard Lavanture and his wife decided they needed to have a supply of masks for their family. Being a wholesaler, Lavanture was able to find sources relatively quickly and bring in 10,000 masks for his family. Given that the Lavan- tures only needed a few hundred, they sold the rest to family members who were first responders or in medical fields. After two or three calls, all of the masks were gone. At that point, Lavanture says he realized that potentially he could use the company's overseas sourcing ability and bring products into the market. "My thought was maybe I can use this to offset the costs of my 50 employees during the production halt," he says. Advance forward 60 days and the company has imported millions of masks, gowns and face shields. It has sold to all different types of people in need, everything from hospitals and individual family practice doctors to fire departments. "I don't know if this will end up being a long-term product line, but it gave my employees work and enabled me to keep making paychecks even when the RV man- ufacturing had stopped," he says. "While the more medical oriented products will probably not stay in our product line, some of the more basic PPE types of things probably will for the foreseeable future. The basic disposable mask is going to be in our life for a while moving forward." Trim-Lok Helps Hospital Acquire Ventilator Several years ago, Gary Whitener, CEO of Trim-Lok in Buena Park, Calif., had some ground-breaking surgery performed. He was one of the first patients to have a heart valve replaced with a cow's valve by cardiologist Dr. Subbarao Myla. So, when Myla recently had a special request for Whit- ener, the businessman didn't hesitate to help. Whitener donated $10,000 to Hoag Memorial Hospital Presbyterian of Newport Beach, Calif., for the purchase of a ventilator. During the global Covid-19 pandemic the importance of all medical facilities being able to access needed equip- ment is vital to the health and safety of communities, patients, doctors and staff. After a conversation with Myla about the hospital's needs, Whitener immediately made the generous contribution. "Dr. Myla is more than just my cardiologist, he is also a good friend," Whitener says. "He knows the importance of having enough ventilators during this coronavirus pan- demic and reached out to me to discuss the need for more ventilators at Hoag. I didn't need to think twice about helping. We are living in unprecedented times and I am honored to donate to such a wonderful hospital." Trim-Lok supplies thermoplastic and thermoset rubber profile extrusions to the RV industry. LaVanture Products was able to obtain large orders of PPE from overseas sources and make them available to people in need. Gary Whitener (center) is pictured with his sons and grandsons at Trim-Lok's offices in Buena Park, Calif. Whitener, CEO of Trim-Lok, donated $10,000 to a local hospital so it could buy a ventilator.

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