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Source: Smithfield Foods

Eckrich®, Operation Homefront, and Safeway Albertsons Honor Military Family with a New Car

Washington State Family Surprised with 2017 Ford Fusion

SEATTLE, Aug. 07, 2017 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Eckrich®, the makers of naturally hardwood smoked sausage and savory deli meats, created an incredible experience for a Western Washington military family on Sunday. During a surprise presentation at the annual Seattle Seafair event, the brand partnered with Operation Homefront and Safeway Albertsons to thank the Baker family of Lakewood, Washington for their service and sacrifices.

A photo accompanying this announcement is available at

The Bakers believed they were invited to the annual event to help award the winners of one of the day’s hydroplane races. Instead, Eckrich and Safeway Albertsons shared their gratitude for the family’s service by surprising them with the keys to a brand-new 2017 Ford Fusion. The gift totaled more than $20,000.

Barnard Baker served as an Indirect Fire Infantryman in the U.S. Army for five years. He was deployed during Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2004 and earned several medals and ribbons, including the Army Commendation Medal. After his service, Barnard worked overseas as a contract security guard to support his family. He and his wife, Natalie, have been married for more than a decade and have two daughters. Natalie is his full-time caregiver and an active member of Operation Homefront’s Hearts of Valor® program, a network of more than 3,000 caregivers of wounded service members which provides annual retreats, support groups, and online communities.

“I’m so grateful that Eckrich and Safeway Albertsons came together to give our family a new car,” said Barnard Baker. “It’s something we really needed, and it means a lot that Eckrich recognizes service members like this.”

The surprise is part of the ongoing campaign by Eckrich to honor military families through its partnership with Operation Homefront, now in its sixth year. Eckrich has donated more than $2.5 million to support the organization’s mission of building strong, stable, and secure military families so that they can thrive – not simply struggle to get by – in the communities they have worked so hard to protect.

“Eckrich has long supported military families across the country,” said Michael Baughman, Smithfield Foods director of marketing. “Our partnership with Safeway Albertsons has allowed us to present numerous military families with unforgettable gifts and experiences. Today, we are proud to surprise the Baker family with a brand-new car to thank them for their service and sacrifice.”

For more information about Eckrich, please visit or follow Eckrich on Facebook and Twitter.
Eckrich is a brand of Smithfield Foods.

About Eckrich
Founded by Peter Eckrich in 1894, Eckrich has a rich heritage starting from a small meat market in Fort Wayne, Ind. Through it all, Eckrich meats have been recognized for their great taste and supreme quality, craftsmanship, care and pride. For more information, visit

About Smithfield Foods
Smithfield Foods is a $15 billion global food company and the world's largest pork processor and hog producer. In the United States, the company is also the leader in numerous packaged meats categories with popular brands including Smithfield, Eckrich, Nathan's Famous, Farmland, Armour, John Morrell, Cook's, Kretschmar, Gwaltney, Curly's, Margherita, Carando, Healthy Ones, Krakus, Morliny and Berlinki. Smithfield Foods is committed to providing good food in a responsible way and maintains robust animal care, community involvement, employee safety, environmental and food safety and quality programs. For more information, visit

About Operation Homefront
Founded in 2002, Operation Homefront is a national nonprofit organization whose mission is to build strong, stable, and secure military families so that they can thrive – not simply struggle to get by – in the communities they have worked so hard to protect. Recognized for superior performance by leading independent charity oversight groups, 92 percent of Operation Homefront expenditures go directly to programs that support tens of thousands of military families each year. Operation Homefront provides critical financial assistance, transitional and permanent housing and family support services to prevent short-term needs from turning into chronic, long-term struggles. Thanks to the generosity of our donors and the support from thousands of volunteers, Operation Homefront proudly serves America’s military families. For more information, go to

Faye Shroff
Breaking Limits for Eckrich
2137 South Blvd., Suite 200
Charlotte, N.C. 28203
Cell: 704-591-4353