Whitehall-Coplay Press

Wednesday, June 3, 2020
Driver Adnan Yousef brings Operation Gratitude donations from CSX Transportation in New Jersey to St. Luke’s University Hospital, Allentown. Driver Adnan Yousef brings Operation Gratitude donations from CSX Transportation in New Jersey to St. Luke’s University Hospital, Allentown.
A sample of thank-you notes from CSX employees and their families to the first responders are gathered together. A sample of thank-you notes from CSX employees and their families to the first responders are gathered together.
One of the many pallet loads of supplies, provided by CSX and Operation Gratitude, is for St. Luke’s University Health Network.Press photos by Paul Cmil One of the many pallet loads of supplies, provided by CSX and Operation Gratitude, is for St. Luke’s University Health Network.Press photos by Paul Cmil

Operation Gratitude gives goods to St. Luke’s

Wednesday, April 22, 2020 by PAUL CMIL Special to The Press in Local News

Danielle Tenconi sent a note to St. Luke’s University Hospital saying it would receive a shipment of supplies for first responders.

St. Luke’s accepted the delivery April 17 — 20,000 pounds of goods.

Tenconi is the director of communications for West Coast-based Operation Gratitude.

“We are a national nonprofit, and we started a new project, Coalition to Support COVID-19 Frontline Responders. So far, we have raised $1.5 million in financial support and $5 million in product donations,” she said.

For the St. Luke’s donation, Operation Gratitude teamed up with CSX Transportation for the supplies.

CSX was formed by the merger of Chesapeake and Ohio Railway and Seaboard Coast Line Railroad. After the merger, they acquired some of Conrail’s assets, making them a key logistics carrier along the Atlantic Coast.

The company has 600 employees in Pennsylvania and employs a strong contingent of veterans — one in every five employees.

The donation was shipped out of California by train and arrived at CSX’s New Jersey terminal and then trucked to Allentown. CSX donated the space on its trucks.

“I was so happy to get a charity run,” driver Adnan Yousef said. “I get to deliver a message of thanks for the work these first responders are doing, and we are happy we can show our gratitude.”

Operation Gratitude has a goal of providing supplies and gifts to 300,000 front line workers.

With restrictions for distributing supplies, drivers like Yousef are critical to keeping supply chains open and preparing for a return to normal. Drivers are making round-the-clock runs on highways with limited services as they work long hours to get supplies where they are needed.