May 04 2018- The vessel "Glory", which originally left Port Tampa Bay on April 8th stocked with everything from school and personal hygiene supplies to food, is finally on its way to Puerto Rico. After leaving Tampa, the Glory stopped in Houston, Texas to pick up more supplies - including a van for use by relief teams in Puerto Rico. While in Houston, the Glory was unable to secure enough fuel to make the trip to Puerto Rico and remained in Houston for several weeks.
Port Tampa Bay tenant "Vulcan Materials Company", which has an office in Houston, heard about the situation and offered to pay for 10,000 gallons of fuel to support the Glory's mission. Fuel supplier World Fuel Services also decided to donate. Both companies will split the $25,000 cost for fuel. The Glory left Houston for Puerto Rico just before noon today.
On April 8th, The Glory originally left from Port Logistics Refrigerated Service ( a cold storage facility at Port Tampa Bay) with 1300 boxes of shampoo, soap, toilet paper, school supplies, and food. The Glory plans to return to Port Tampa Bay at the end of May to pick up hundreds of mattresses and other supplies to take to Puerto Rico. Port Tampa Bay will help coordinate this effort. Port Tampa Bay waived all fees associated with the shipment of the supplies when the Glory departed Tampa.
Shawna & James Downs and their children live aboard the Glory, traveling around the world to help people in need. They run the faith-based Good Samaritan Shipping Ministries. They expect to arrive to Puerto Rico next week.
Rafael Gaztambide, President of JJ Lyon Guard Foundation, has been deeply involved with efforts to send supplies to Puerto Rico since last year. He is in Tampa and can be reached at 813-217-1112