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FTI Groups

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  1. I do not have the accounting info here at home but we generally get requests on about half of the tragedies that occur in the industry. Our committee reaches out proactively to the companies to try to serve as many families as possible but half is typically the outcome. I am also not sure of the total paid out to date but having been doing this for more than a dozen years, it has been great to see the Fund grow and to help many families. Our payouts have been in the nundreds of thousands of dollars and we have a financial position that will ensure the Fund is here for those that need it on a perpetual basis. Unfortunately, the first $9,500 check under this new payout amount was written yesterday. The good news is that the benefit has grown and we often hear about how helpful and impacting it is to these families at a critical time.
  2. I do not have the exact figures but between some tremendous donations and other efforts that week we raised close to $100K for the Survivor Fund and the auction raised about $175K for the museum. The events were great and I appreciate everyone's support.
  3. Chattanooga, Tennessee: For Immediate Release Kapnick Insurance Group recently donated $10,000 to sponsor the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum’s new welcome video. The video highlights the history of towing and recovery and the various initiatives of ITRHFM. “The museum is excited about the new welcome video in our theater and the ability to keep it updated going forward,” said Jeffrey Godwin, First Vice President of the museum. “Having the strong support of Kapnick Insurance has allowed us to modernize our approach and to tell more of the story of this industry whose heritage we preserve. It is our honor to work with Kapnick to bring a fresh look at the industry to all of those who visit our museum each day.” Established in 1995, the museum includes a theatre, a rotating collection of equipment and exhibits showing the history of towing and recovery, and a hall of fame honoring individuals who have significantly advanced the industry. “Kapnick has been supporting various towing associations ever since we became involved in the industry over 30 years ago. Supporting ITRHFM’s mission is just one way we can show our towing clients how much we care,” Mark Arbaugh, Partner of Kapnick Insurance Group, said. It is also home to the industry’s Wall of the Fallen memorial, dedicated to towers who died while in the line of service, and organizes a Survivor Fund which assists the families of the men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of service by providing a uniform financial gift at the time of their loss. “At Kapnick, we know how important great employees are to the success of a company, and what a tragedy it is to lose someone in a work-related fatality,” said Jim Kapnick, CEO of Kapnick Insurance Group. “We’re proud to sponsor an organization which supports such a great cause.” About ITRHFM: The International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Chattanooga, TN, houses an array of displays and exhibits showcasing the history of towing and recovery. The rotating collection includes early equipment by Manley, Holmes, Vulcan, and Weaver. The Museum includes a theater, a library, and a gift shop selling souvenirs related to the towing industry. ITRHFM is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and accepts donations for its programs and operations from individuals, corporations and groups. Learn more at www.towingmuseum.com. About Kapnick: Founded in 1946, Kapnick Insurance Group is a third generation, privately held, Michigan based professional service firm. Their 160+ employees provide expert guidance pertaining to business insurance, risk solutions, employee benefits, corporate wellness, and personal insurance to a vast and diverse base of clients worldwide. For over 70 years, companies have looked to Kapnick Insurance Group as a trusted advisor, providing solutions that protect their operations and employees.
  4. Chattanooga, TN – October 22, 2019 – At its annual general meeting, the board of directors of the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum (ITRHFM), announced an increase in the death benefit available to families when industry tragedy occurs. In recent months, the Survivor Fund has enjoyed some generous giving from many of its partners around the industry. Having applied its financial stewardship formula, the board reset the death benefit paid to each approved application from $5,000 per incident to $7,000 per incident. If the deceased was employed by a company who was a member in good standing of the museum at the time of the incident, or if the deceased was a member in good standing, the benefit increases to $9,500, up from $7,500. "We are blessed with a healthy financial position provided by the generosity of our industry,” said Jeffrey Godwin, Survivor Fund Committee Co-Chairman. “With an eye toward long term support of the industry, we implemented a formula a few years ago to drive our giving. The result is one where the support of the Survivor Fund by our industry has allowed us to make a significant increase to the amount we are able to provide families going forward.” The Survivor Fund is supported by individual operators, towing and road service companies of all sizes, motor clubs, industry suppliers and many more. The pledge program for the Survivor Fund works to replenish funds paid out at the time of industry tragedies and provides stability allowing increases to the benefit by gaining support from contributions as simple as those where individuals and companies pledge as little as $5 per death. “It is our hope that all companies across our industry will become members of the museum to preserve our history and to provide this meaningful protection for the families of their employees,” said Lee Roberts, Survivor Fund Committee Co-Chairman. The Survivor Fund, founded in 2006 and managed by the International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum, was started to offer financial support to the families that have lost a loved one in the line of service within industry. Since 2006 the Survivor Fund has approved and paid out hundreds of claims to support families in their time of need due to tragic accidents. The ITRHFM is working to build a perpetual fund while also supporting families as the fund is built. Increases in benefits to families are made based on the fundraising of the Survivor Fund and the increased security of the Fund based on its investment health. About ITRHFM The International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Chattanooga, TN, houses an array of displays and exhibits showcasing the history of towing and recovery. The rotating collection includes early equipment by Manley, Holmes, Vulcan, and Weaver. The Hall of Fame honors individuals who have significantly advanced the industry. The Museum includes a theater, a library, and a gift shop selling souvenirs related to the towing industry. On the outside grounds is the Wall of the Fallen memorial, dedicated to towers who died in the line of service. The ITRHFM Survivor Fund assists the families of the men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of service by providing a uniform financial gift at the time of their loss. ITRHFM is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and accepts donations for its programs and operations from individuals, corporations and groups. Learn more at www.towingmuseum.com.
  5. October 22, 2019 / CHATTANOOGA, TN – The International Towing & Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum added twenty-eight new names to the Wall of the Fallen during its recent annual ceremony honoring towing and road service operators who have died in the line of service. The names include those from previous years as the details of fatalities become known. In all, the Wall of the Fallen now has over 450 names of men and women who have lost their lives while serving the motoring public in the towing and road service industry. (See below for complete list of towing operator names added in 2019.) The Wall of the Fallen ceremony seeks to honor towing operators whose lives were cut short and the Survivor Fund provides a one-time gift to the families. Survivors’ families also receive a Certificate of Honor at the ceremony. “It is with great sadness that we find ourselves in a position that requires the Wall of the Fallen,” stated Jeffrey Godwin, Wall of the Fallen and Survivor Fund co-chairman. “Despite the tragedy represented, we do find comfort in honoring our fallen operators and in serving their families in their time of loss.” The annual ceremony also aims to boost motorists’ awareness of Move Over laws in effect in all 50 states that require drivers to move over one lane and/or slow down when approaching an emergency vehicle. Annually, the motoring public’s failure to slow down or move over, in addition to drunken or negligent driving, unnecessarily claims many towers’ lives. About ITRHFM The International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Chattanooga, TN, houses an array of displays and exhibits showcasing the history of towing and recovery. The rotating collection includes early equipment by Manley, Holmes, Vulcan, and Weaver. The Hall of Fame honors individuals who have significantly advanced the industry. The Museum includes a theater, a library, and a gift shop selling souvenirs related to the towing industry. On the outside grounds is the Wall of the Fallen memorial, dedicated to towers who died in the line of service. The ITRHFM Survivor Fund assists the families of the men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of service by providing a uniform financial gift at the time of their loss. ITRHFM is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and accepts donations for its programs and operations from individuals, corporations and groups. Learn more at www.towingmuseum.com. 2019 Wall of the Fallen (in alphabetical order) Honoree Name State Year Phillip F. Amsden IN 2010 Patric Noel Barrio TX 2019 Michael Charles Buffington MS 2019 Patrick Cisneros NM 2019 Garold L. Cline WV 2018 Jerry E. Davenport AR 2018 Ernest Linden Dean KY 1945 Steven E. Eldridge NC 2019 Erwin Mendoza Geremillo CA 2019 Trevor A. Haas IL 2018 Richard Arturo Hernandez CA 1999 Jesse Hettmann WI 2019 Keith Holt, Sr. TX 2019 Elwood Allan Humphries VA 2018 Clarence C. Jones, Jr. PA 1963 Charles C. McGough TX 2018 Juan Manuel Morga CA 2018 James Robert Morris CA 2019 Terrell Dean Pack TX 2019 Willie J. Passmore, Jr. NE 2011 Edgar Arthur Pilon Canada 1954 Kevin B. Raasch KS 2019 Clarence Hugh Souther, Jr. GA 1962 Benny G. Sprinkle NC 2019 John L. Stewart MO 2018 Paul Wayne Taylor, Jr TX 2018 Jason Stuart Throne IN 2019 Michael R. White OK 2018
  6. October 22, 2019 / CHATTANOOGA, TN – At its annual general membership meeting in Chattanooga, TN, held recently in conjunction with other museum weekend events, the International Towing & Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum announced the results of the election of its general board. The new board will begin its term November 1, 2019, and is comprised of: Bill Byers Danny Horton Jim Jennings Bert King Jon Kupchin Mike Porter Lee Roberts Geoff Russell John Weaver The ITRHFM executive board remains unchanged until that election is held in 2020. Those members are: President: Bill Gratzianna 1st Vice President: Jeffrey Godwin 2nd Vice President: Kevin Fox Treasurer: Tom Tedford Secretary: Steve Welchel Immediate Past President: Troy Barnett About ITRHFM The International Towing and Recovery Hall of Fame and Museum, located in Chattanooga, TN, houses an array of displays and exhibits showcasing the history of towing and recovery. The rotating collection includes early equipment by Manley, Holmes, Vulcan, and Weaver. The Hall of Fame honors individuals who have significantly advanced the industry. The Museum includes a theater, a library, and a gift shop selling souvenirs related to the towing industry. On the outside grounds is the Wall of the Fallen memorial, dedicated to towers who died in the line of service. The ITRHFM Survivor Fund assists the families of the men and women that have made the ultimate sacrifice in the line of service by providing a uniform financial gift at the time of their loss. ITRHFM is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization and accepts donations for its programs and operations from individuals, corporations and groups. Learn more at www.towingmuseum.com.
  7. Shiver me timbers (or t-shirts in this case).
  8. SDMO Gear Launches New Site for Products Haslet TX, September 12, 2019 - SDMO Gear, LLC announced today the initial launch of its new online store offering fresh designs in Slow Down Move Over branded items to consumers. The business is about raising awareness of the issue from the inside of a for-profit business model while being tasteful and respectful of those professionals in the industries most impacted by the public’s lack of awareness or concern for those in harm’s way. SDMO Gear also plans to help the families of those who tragedy befalls by supporting the non-profits who are dedicated to specific groups whose constituency is on the roadside taking the risks every day as they pursue their careers. The company has chosen to focus on numerous public safety disciplines and to identify some specific groups who are highly impacted by the lack of compliance with the existing Slow Down Move Over laws in all 50 states. Primary responders like Police, Fire, Towing, and EMS were the most obvious choices due to the on-demand nature of their response and the additional dangers of being on the roadside in situations where your presence is unplanned. Additionally, SDMO Gear has specifically called out the Mobile Mechanic role, Road Construction workers, and Flaggers, all of whom face many different types of situations and deal with the same driving public as the others. There are certainly more to be recognized but SDMO Gear is also working to setup the relationships with the best organizations offering support to the various groups. Simply put, SDMO Gear aims to raise awareness, save lives, make money, and support those left behind when tragedy strikes. Learn more at www.sdmogear.com. About Us SDMO Gear, LLC is dedicated to generating public awareness of the dangers faced by emergency responders and others on our nation’s roadways and to educating the audience about the existence of Slow Down Move Over laws. Our for-profit venture sells SDMO branded gear to generate this awareness and we donate significant time as well as a portion of top line revenue to charitable causes and organizations supporting those left behind by these tragedies. We make it the customer’s choice as to which group receives the financial benefit of their transaction. Through this approach we hope to support all disciplines and professions faced with the senseless tragedy of roadside deaths caused by the same motorists these men and women work to serve.
  9. Great winter socks for boots!
  10. I am here somewhere... trying to find myself but 'here' at least in spirit.
  11. Just three batteries. I believe they are AAA. Single arrow: http://internationaltowingmuseum.org/product/move-over-arrow/ Case: http://internationaltowingmuseum.org/product/move-over-arrow-case/
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