Memory of Jon Huntsman Sr. honored with tree planting, bench unveiling

Published 9:49 am Friday, April 20, 2018

PORT NECHES — A celebration of Earth Day and of the life and spirit of Jon M. Huntsman Sr. took place with the planting of trees and unveiling of a granite bench outside Port Neches City Hall on Thursday.

Peter Huntsman, chief executive officer of Huntsman Corporation, told the audience that when the Port Neches facility was purchased back in 1994 his father was told it was not producing enough, and everyone from bankers to lawyers advised Jon Huntsman Sr. against the acquisition.

But the senior Huntsman was confident of the people and the assets here, and the facility is flourishing.

Subscribe to our free email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox

“My father invested in people and had a tremendous love for this area, especially the Jefferson County area,” Peter Huntsman said.

Jefferson County Judge Jeff Branick addressed the group on the topic of Earth Day and how industry in general has changed environmentally.

“When I was little growing up in Port Arthur the air was… palpable,” Branick said. “You couldn’t catch any fish in the ship channel or the Intracoastal Canal but now we’ve become an air quality attainment area thus ensuring air quality.”

Huntsman, along with Port Neches Mayor Glenn Johnson and Huntsman Site Director Chad Anderson later walked over to some newly planted trees and laid the last few shovels full of dirt as the crowd watched. The tree planting was a way for Huntsman to continue the growth and preservation of the area.

In addition, Texas State Sen. Brandon Creighton was on hand to present Huntsman with a flag that was flown over the capitol in memory of the senior Huntsman.