Supporting Our Veterans

Puyallup Heating and Air Conditioning Donates high Efficiency Air Conditioner to Army Veteran

Honoring our military veterans can take many forms. When Henson Smith of Puyallup Heating & Air Conditioning read an article in The News Tribune, By columnist Larry LaRue, detailing the daily struggles and perseverance of a local disabled veteran, Rob Fidler and his wife Liz hunt, he knew there must be a way that he could make a real difference for a family whose life was forever altered by the burdens of war. Henson thought, “No one should have to go through what this family does, having given so much for our country.” Rob Fidler’s story touched him, and he was committed to finding a way to helo. It was a quick and easy decision to donate an air conditioner to this deserving family. Mr. LaRue’s article detailed how, as soon as he was old enough, Rob joined the Army and since the late 1980’s had jumped out of airplanes into combat zones all over the world including Panama, Kosovo, Bosnia, Iraq and Afghanistan. Injuries were common but Rob continued on. Near the end of his military career a combination of complications including migraines, surgery on his neck and stabbing pains in his arms and legs precipitated a medical discharge near the end of 2014. Now striving to live as normal a life as possible, Rob’s wife, Liz Hunt, explained in the article that there was a lot for the family to deal with as Rob’s migraines are often debilitating and even the simple act of walking down the home stairs can cause him to become frozen in pain. “The hardest thing might be that Rob is in pain every day. It’s hard for the kids to understand. We’ll plan something fun and Dad has to go to the ER.” Liz became advocate and caregiver in addition to a wife and mother. Wanting to find out more about the couple, Henson reached out to the author, Larry LaRue, and was able to contact Rob and Liz, whose story had impacted him. “When I first met Rob and Liz we talked for a while and it was obvious that Rob was in pain, which I learned is very normal. Rob commented that when the worst of the migraines hit, he wants to find a dark, cool place to relax until they pass””, Henson said. “That is when I knew the air conditioner could make a positive impact for Rob and his family. I also learned that he and one of his sons dealt with allergies, which I knew we could help with too.” After Henson checked their furnace and found it was a basic builders model in an upstairs closet, he reached out to Puyallup Heating’s Carrier distributor, Airefco, Inc., and came up with a plan. Working with a great group of partners, they were able to provide and install a 96% efficient gas furnace with a variable speed blower, a 15 seer air conditioning system and a high efficiency air purifier system in Army Veteran Rob Fidler’s home. In addition, AeroSeal waived all the royalty fees so they were able to seal the ductwork at no cost. Johnstone Supply donated all the refrigeration accessories along with a Honeywell thermostat with remote control, and JB Associates provided a 10 year parts and labor warranty to insure the lowest long term costs for the family. Thinking about what Rob has sacrificed for this country and all that his wife , Liz, does to help him and her family every day, there was a lot of inspiration for Puyallup Heating to get together with partners he knew were as dedicated to helping the deserving servicemen and servicewomen however they could. Besides working towards an ongoing discount program for similar military families, he’s learning from Rob and Liz about an organization, Operation Ward 57, which supports wounded and injured veterans, and the caregivers who ad in their recovery. “We hope to do more with the disabled veterans,” said Henson. “We would like to help establish a wider based program to support the efforts of groups like Operation Ward 57.”