When Hurricane Sandy wiped out power at the armory of the New York Army National Guard’s 69th Infantry Regiment on 68 Lexington St., it was Victoria's Secret, of all organizations, to the rescue. We guess they don't call them Angels for nothing.
According to Wired, Victoria's Secret had brought eight massive 500 kilowatt generators to help power up their annual blockbuster show, which, for the third time in a year, will be held at the Regiment’s historic armory at 25th Street and Lexington Avenue on November 7. When producers of the show got a call from the National Guard on Tuesday morning asking for help, they made sure those generators went to good use.
Soon the Victoria's Secret crew was able to get some lights and hot water back on in the building--enough to help the National Guard get started on the daunting operations at hand.
"We were dead in the water until Victoria’s Secret showed up," Capt. Brendan Gendron, the Regiment’s operations officer told Wired.
But Victoria's Secret wasn't done yet. An associate producer for the show suggested they might be able to power up the whole building. The crew quickly set to work and by 7pm on Tuesday, the armory had full power--even the elevators were working.
It was no easy feat either:
It was a kludge, and it had to be done right: the producers didn’t want to fry the building when the local Con Ed substation finally started generating electricity again. "I have to admit, I was very skeptical," Consulting producer Dave Shapiro says.
But the National Guard was still by no means in tip top shape. The armory lacked internet and other essential operational equipment. Once again, Victoria's Secret came through in the clutch.
For the show, [Shapiro] had leased a T1 line connected to a microwave dish on the roof. “We plopped two routers in their command center,” he says, “and now [the National Guard is] sitting on our internet backbone.”
Finally, the National Guard needed help distributing large amounts of food--a task made more difficult because the armory didn't have a forklift. But, of course, Victoria's Secret did--and they promptly leant it to the soldiers.
While we don't expect to see any of the show's producers on stage at the Victoria's Secret Fashion Show, we think their incredible efforts during the hurricane have certainly earned them some wings.
Only now, according The New York Post, Victoria's Secret is giving the boot to hundreds of National Guardsmen and Army and Air Force personnel, currently bunking at the armory, to make room for the blockbuster event. About 300 men and women in uniform have been sleeping at the armory in between Hurricane-relief shifts--but by Wednesday that number will be reduced to 60 so that Victoria's Secret can move in equipment, and construct temporary dressing rooms.
UPDATE: We just heard from Victoria's Secret and they assure us that the Post's report is entirely untrue. The National Guard is incredibly grateful for the lingerie giant's help during Hurricane Sandy. Guardsmen will relocate as planned--Victoria's Secret is not kicking them out, as the Post's report implied.