(NewsNation) — Adrian Kellgren says it didn’t take long for him to realize what to do with a $200,000 order that suddenly had no client to pay the tab.
Kellgren owns KelTec, a weapons manufacturing company based in Florida. He received a huge order for hundreds of 9mm carbine rifles last year and got to work filling it. But by the time the bureaucratic process for sending those weapons overseas was done in February of this year, he could no longer reach his client.
The client lived in Odessa, Ukraine — a city under siege from the early days of the Russian invasion.
If they couldn’t be used by whoever ordered them originally, Kellgren decided the best thing to do was to send those weapons to Ukraine’s military.
“This is just right to get them over there so they do what they were designed to do — defend their home and state,” Kellgren told NewsNation.
He added that the process to change the paperwork on the shipment was surprisingly smooth. It took four months for the original order to clear the U.S. and Ukrainian governments, but just four days to reroute them.
The weapons will head to a NATO country before being taken into Ukraine. What happens after that is up to the Ukrainian military.
The weapons are folding semi-automatic rifles, which Kellgren says are ideal for urban combat. Though the Russians are fighting with more advanced weapons, Kellgren believes the Ukrainians have proven we shouldn’t underestimate their will.
“The only thing that’s going to make a difference in this case is the people using them,” he said.