Coalition to Salute America's Heros

NAPE® Oil & Gas Luncheon Raises $250,000 for Wounded Troops

15th Annual NAPE Oil & Gas Expo hosts luncheon and auctions to raise money for wounded Operation Enduring Freedom and Operation Iraqi Freedom veterans


Ossining, NY -- (ReleaseWire) -- 03/02/2007 --The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes, a non-profit, nonpartisan organization that provides much needed support and assistance to severely wounded service members returning home from the War on Terror, is excited to announce that a luncheon and auction at the NAPE Expo in Houston, Texas raised more than $250,000 for wounded troops.

“The NAPE Oil & Gas Expo is one of the premiere events in the oil and gas industry. We were honored that NAPE chose to support and honor our wounded heroes at its expo luncheon,” said Ray Clifford, executive director of the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes. “We’d like to thank NAPE, Shell, ExxonMobil and the other corporations and individuals who stepped up in a big way with their donations for the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes.”

Robin Forté, executive vice president of NAPE, says, “The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes is one our nation’s top resources for severely injured service members. It is our honor to join with the Coalition to increase awareness of the needs our wounded service members and raise money to help these brave men and women rebuild their lives.”

Former Grammy winner, Larry Gatlin, performed a special concert for the luncheon attendees after the live auction, in which he brought up injured service members on stage when he performed.

Also appearing at the luncheon was Kevin Harvick, Busch Series Champion and winner of five Nextel Cup races in 2006, who was there to represent Shell and help raise funds for the coalition.

The “Lunch with America’s Heroes” luncheon and auctions of various celebrity items lasted from 11:30 A.M. to 1:30 PM. In those two hours, more than a quarter of a million dollars was raised for the non-profit, non-partisan organization:

Corporate partner, Shell Exploration & Production, presented the Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes with a check for $25,000

ExxonMobil gave $10,000 to the organization.

The live auction raised nearly $40,000. A 2005 custom Harley Sportster XL1200 was the top-seller at the live auction, going for $20,000. Other top sellers were a Dave Matthews Band autographed guitar for $4,000, an autographed Peyton Manning helmet for $2,500, LeAnn Rimes autographed guitar for $3,500, Toby Keith custom autographed guitar for $3,200; Air Force NASCAR hood for $1,100; Richard Petty driving experience for $4,000; and a guitar signed by dozens of artists at Country Music Awards was sold for $3,500.

The remaining donations were from corporations and individuals attending the luncheon. Pictures available upon request.

About The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes:
The Coalition to Salute America’s Heroes is a non-partisan, non-profit organization that offers several programs to assist disabled veterans who have served in Iraq and Afghanistan: Wounded Hero Emergency Financial Relief (provides urgent financial assistance to disabled veterans), Homes for Wounded Heroes (offers nearly cost-free, new or renovated disability adapted homes to men and women), Hire A Hero (reaches out through a network of organizations to help prepare and place motivated, qualified veterans in quality jobs), Family Support Network (offers special services to help relieve financial and emotional burdens facing heroes and their families), and the Road to Recovery Conferences (all-expense paid educational and service events for wounded servicemen and servicewomen and their families). For more information please visit the website at