NEW YORK, Sept. 12 /PRNewswire/ -- 3,000 temporary air mattresses started
arriving this weekend to shelters in Louisiana and Alabama through a regional
donation program led by 1-800-Mattress and its distributors in the Southeast.
Shortly after the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina was reported,
1-800-Mattress executives in New York were in touch with their distributors in
the region to assess the affects of damage and how they could assist them and
residents in the area. After a series of calls and contact with national
relief organizations, a determination was made that vinyl air mattresses,
manually inflatable, were best suited for the donation, as they can be used on
any surface and then deflated and folded down for mobility.
Johnson Furniture in Bossier City, LA identified a need for 1,500 air
mattresses for the Summer Grove Disaster Relief Center in Shreveport, which is
providing temporary shelter for residents evacuated from points farther south,
750 air mattresses are going to the Red Cross in New Orleans through Bedding
Plus in New Orleans, LA, and Union Furniture Co. in Tuscaloosa, AL expedited
getting the 750 air mattresses to the local Red Cross and Salvation Army
relief efforts in their area.
"When we learned of the devastation, Joe Vicens, our executive in charge
of our national sales program was in quick touch with our partners in the
region to see how we could be of help. Though many of them had business
interruptions themselves, they were all concerned about their local citizens
and together, we devised a strategy to help," said Luis Barragan, president
and chief operating officer of 1-800-Mattress.
For many years, 1-800-Mattress has helped disaster victims. After 9/11,
the company donated more than 300 mattresses to the New York City Fire
Department and last year, the company sent a truckload of mattresses to South
Florida following the devastation caused by Hurricane Charley.
"We know that in times of crisis such as these, exhaustion and sleep
deprivation are a part of the health concerns facing victims and rescue
workers," Barragan added. "We are grateful to our local partners such as
Bedding Plus, Johnson Furniture and Union Furniture Co. who helped us get the
temporary bedding to the local communities who needed assistance most. We hope
that in a small way, we can bring a bit of comfort and rest to the victims of
this terrible tragedy."
Founded in 1976, 1-800-Mattress is the nation's leading marketer of
bedroom furnishings, enabling consumers to purchase a vast array of
mattresses, box springs and bedding accessories by phone and Internet 24/7.
The company also operates 47 retail stores in New York, New Jersey,
Connecticut, Maryland and California. It features products by Sealy, Serta,
Simmons, King Koil, Nation's Pride and Tempurpedic in 69 styles including odd
sizes, futons and electric beds.
Contact: Jerry Schranz/Stan Steinreich