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Textron Systems employees rush to aid colleagues after Hurricane Ida

November 16, 2021

There’s a motto that runs strong within our team—we are One Textron Systems.

On Aug. 29, Hurricane Ida made landfall on the southern coast of Louisiana. Many of our colleagues were impacted by power outages, evacuations and damage to their homes, and some of our facilities were also affected.

After seeing and hearing about the effects Hurricane Ida had on our colleagues, the Textron Systems family demonstrated what One Textron Systems means and immediately jumped to action; collecting supplies, monetary donations and working to get our facilities back up and running. Our Employee Resource Groups wasted no time in organizing a donation drive for our teammates in need.

“Our hardworking team in Louisiana needed help,” said Mike, Senior Vice President, Integrated Supply Chain. “It felt like the least we could do.”

In just two days, the team came together to collect more than 23,000 pounds of bottled water, food, toiletries and other necessities. By the end of day two, Textron Systems employees, as well as our Bell, Textron Aviation and Textron colleagues, had exceeded $21,000 in monetary donations.

Katie, Senior Manager, Human Resources, is based in Louisiana and was a lead figure in recovering our facilities and ensuring the wellness of our colleagues.

“When I heard about the amount of monetary and physical donations, I was overwhelmed by the support and how quickly it all came together,” Katie said. “It was truly incredible and so heartwarming to see.”

Trucks began to arrive at our facility in Louisiana on Sunday, Sept. 5. In total, four deliveries were made, coming from both Maryland and Texas to drop off items that were donated and those bought using monetary donations. It didn’t take long for people to clear almost every item from the donation tables.

“Hurricane Ida has been one of the strongest hurricanes our area has seen and so many of our team members have been impacted,” Katie said. “I’ve had the pleasure to talk with people as they’ve come to the supply drive and see, first-hand, the positive impact it has made on their lives.”

While some were collecting and distributing donations to colleagues, others were donating their time to help get our facilities back up and running. For some, this included time spent cleaning and ensuring our facilities could once again be used as a workspace. For Daniel, Manager, IT, this included spending his weekend on airplanes in a successful attempt to regain internet connection.

“As part of our IT discussions into restarting the operations in New Orleans, the local utility was reporting the internet connection to our Shipyard was down and they weren’t sure when it would come back,” Daniel said. “The business needed to have a connection in order for the shop floor folks to be able to work, complete timecards and pull up drawings.”

The weekend following the hurricane, Daniel took several flights—Maryland to Rhode Island; Rhode Island to Louisiana; Louisiana back to Maryland—and worked with our IT teams in Louisiana to restore the connection.

“It was definitely a team effort,” Daniel said.

In the days following Hurricane Ida, a great number of our team members volunteered their time—totaling nearly 15,000 hours—to cleaning our facilities and distributing essential food and items to their affected colleagues. Because of their dedication to assisting recovery efforts, a majority of our facilities in Louisiana are currently up and running, with the exception of a few workspaces.

“I was stunned and moved by the generosity of our employees with their money and time to help people, that in many cases, they have never even met,” Mike said. “I’m proud to be a part of our Textron Systems family that demonstrated what it truly means to have each other’s backs.”

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