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Henderson veteran-owned firm gives 100K masks to VA center

A veteran-owned company donated 100,000 three-ply disposable masks Thursday to the Veterans Affairs Southern Nevada Healthcare System to help fill the need for personal protective equipment.

Shield Works 3PL is a third-party logistics company that does overseas manufacturing, shipping and warehouse storage of products. In response to COVID-19, the company’s existing clients and inventory of PPE allowed them to supply quickly, company President Dane Pendleton said.

“There’s a lot of people out there that could do what we do, but we just happened to be ‘right place, right time’ and had the sourcing and the availability to get the products that were needed over here,” Pendleton said.

Pendleton and David Tabios, the company’s vice president, are Army veterans who felt inspired to help the community but were concerned they could not “make a dent” in California during the shutdown mandated by Gov. Gavin Newsom.

“We weren’t allowed to help and operate. Meanwhile, we were handling the distribution of PPE products that were needed,” Pendleton said. “When we were told that we couldn’t continue to help, David and I made an executive decision to move the company out to Nevada.”

Within two weeks, the company moved from Santa Ana, California, and settled in Henderson, Pendleton said.

The company has around 70 employees worldwide, executive assistant Jessie Koehler said. Pendleton and Tabios have the goal to make Shield Works an at least 70 percent veteran-operated company.

“A lot of times when vets get out of the military, they’re so indoctrinated into the military that they don’t know what to do when they get out, or a lot of veterans trying to get back in feel lost,” Tabios said.

That’s why the pair founded the company, he said.

“We just want to find people that are lost and give them purpose again,” Tabios said. “We want to give back and just to make sure that all vets are taken care of because a lot are forgotten.”

The two would like to continue helping in the community beyond the VA but started with the local VA because it has taken care of them, Pendleton said.

“David and I sat down and we’re like, ‘OK, we’re gonna start with the VA, and then we want to help out the colleges in whatever way we can. We want to help out education, we want to help out the police departments’ and so this is just our way of giving back to Las Vegas as a community,” Pendleton said.

Robert Johnson, of voluntary services at the VA medical center, said that during COVID-19, the local VA has received more than $130,000 in donations, masks and meals for first responders.

Contact Jannelle Calderon at jcalderon@reviewjournal.com. Follow @NewsyJan on Twitter.

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