Team Pepin assists Skipper’s Smokehouse in relief efforts to devastated lower Florida Keys

Pepin provides semi-truck to haul needed Supplies to Lower Keys relief

TAMPA –Tom White and Cricket Larson of Skippers Smokehouse had a dream to own a home in the Florida Keys. Approximately 1 year ago, their dream came true. Today they have a different dream.  They want to make a difference and provide aid to their neighbors and citizens of the Lower Florida Keys with relief supplies.  Now, they know their home fared well but they know that help is needed in this devastated region of Florida. Skippers has collected a semi-truck load of life-saving supplies and other humanitarian goods by reaching out to the Tampa community, “mostly using social media” said Cricket Larson. The critical question Cricket asked herself is “how do we get all the relief supplies to their beloved area of the Lower Keys”?

She decided to call Skippers longtime friend Tom Pepin to ask to assist in her humanitarian mission. Tom agreed to provide a semi-truck and two Pepin employees, who volunteered, to drive it down to either Key Deer refuge on Big Pine or the Sears Town parking lot on Key West. Key West District III Commissioner Billy Wardlow has assisted with coordinating the access needed for the huge Skippers delivery to the citizens of the lower keys The Pepin tractor and 48-foot trailer – to be filled with thousands of gallons of water, non-perishable food, clothes, medicine and all the donated supplies is planned to depart Thursday from the Northdale Recreation Center.

Thanks to County Commissioner Ken Hagan, the Northdale Recreation Center has become the storage facility for all the donated items collected by Skippers since Wednesday after Hurricane Irma.

Supplies will immediately be delivered to citizens of the Lower Keys. Electricity is still scarce and damage is widespread. Many are without a home to return too. “The Pepin family, employees and partners like Skippers are committed to come together to overcome this tragedy and rebuild our communities, especially to our fellow Floridians down in the Keys who suffered so much impact from the storm.

This is what we do in hard times; we help our neighbors, and I am proud to work with Skippers who scrambled quickly and tirelessly to put this humanitarian relief effort together.” says Tom Pepin CEO of Pepin Distributing Company.

Pepin employees are also assisting with local relief efforts throughout Tampa Bay.

“There is a great need for many citizens right here in our local area. We are receiving 19,440 cans water from Anheuser Busch by Tuesday September 19th. Pepin will partner with the City of Tampa, the County Commission, Feed Tampa Bay and other local organizations says Bill Gieseking, Director of Marketing for Pepin Distributing Co.