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Tent industry remembers Kevin McBride

Industry News, News, People | January 7, 2022 | By: IFAI

Industry leader Kevin McBride, 68, passed away Wednesday, Jan. 5, 2022, in Sun City West, Ariz.

McBride, the former owner of PJ McBride Inc., West Babylon, N.Y., was a longtime leader and member of the Industrial Fabrics Association International and the Tent Rental Division and was the TRD chairman from 2004 to 2006.

He was also recognized with the Bruce W. Wodetzki Award, the tent rental industry’s most prestigious honor, in 2007. The award is named for the founding member and first Chairman of IFAI’s Tent Rental Division (TRD) and recognizes professionals who continue his legacy of impacting the growth, direction and success of the tent rental industry. 

McBride was the owner of PJ McBride Inc. until its acquisition by Stamford Tents & Events in 2011 and continued to serve the industry in the ensuing decade.

Industry leaders remembered McBride as a leader and innovator in the industry.

“I am extremely sad to learn of the loss of Kevin McBride and my heartfelt condolences go out to his family including his wife Janet and his father Pat. Also to his numerous  industry friends, and the many loyal employees that he had over his terrific career,” said Jim Reyen, business director at Eureka Tents!  “I used to always hear about Kevin and his company when I first started 30 years ago but had the honor and privilege of getting to know him better and becoming friends with him while we served together on the TRD Steering Committee.  I cannot think of anyone that dedicated more to this division than Kevin including his time serving as the Chairman of the Division and ultimately him winning an incredibly well deserved Bruce Wodetzki Award in 2007.  He loved the TRD and I will always appreciate the time he took to mentor our group, his countless contributions at TRD Events, and specifically a special time we had listening to the Jimmy Buffet Cover Band, and enjoying a memorable TRD Beach Tent Party in St. Pete.  Kevin was a terrific guy and a wonderful asset to this division and he will be greatly missed.”

“His love and respect for tenting led him to serve on and eventually chair the IFAI’s Tent Rental Division Steering Committee,” said Jerry O’Connell, the 2005 Wodetzki award winner. “Kevin also spent years on the original Education Committee that wrote the industry’s first ‘how to’ manual for the safe installation of tentage. Kevin had a thirst for knowledge that led him to read about widely diverse topics. That opened his mind to listen to other’s opinions and to new ideas that he was always willing to try.  But what I most admired about Kevin was his devotion to friendships. He really got to know his friends, their families, their businesses, and how they all intertwined. His web of friendships allowed him to have his ‘finger on the pulse’ of our tent rental world which helped the TRD and its members on countless occasions. He was always there when you needed him.”

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