The Freedom Towel website is to Honor our Veterans and those who Served. In early 2008, Paul Gaudino and Mike Kelly were working together on the Publicity Committee for the Butler County Veterans Day Parade, trying to come up with ways to raise money for veterans, increase awareness, and boost attendance at the Veterans’ Day Parades. Over the years, the people seemed to be forgetting the price veterans have paid. The crowd sizes were dwindling, with very few young people attending. Paul and Mike started brainstorming and decided to have a parade showing historical characters from both World Wars and use other representatives of freedom, such as Uncle Sam, Abe Lincoln, Statue of Liberty, and Rosie the Riveter to entertain and even educate the very young.
Display the Freedom Towel
Display the Freedom Towel to Honor your Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, an Air Force. Paul also wanted something for the crowds to waive and various examples came to his mind. When the Pope comes to town, people waive white flags or handkerchiefs. Paul, a first generation American, also remembered the pictures of early immigrants seeing Ellis Island for the first time from the ship, and they would be waiving scarves and handkerchiefs to the Statue of Liberty and to America, which was welcoming them to their new home. And, of course, being born and raised in Western Pennsylvania, Paul knew of the Terrible Towels that were waived at every Steelers’ football game. He decided that a Freedom Towel could be waived or hung in honor of Veterans around the world to show them how thankful we are for the sacrifices they have made. The Towel would be something small we could all do. Paul went out and bought 3 towels, one white, one red and one blue, and had them sewn together. The first towel only said "Freedom Towel" on it, but Paul decided that wasn’t enough and added "Thank you Veterans" to specifically thank them. He felt that we should all thank the veterans every day of the year…not just for one day! Cold War Vets HonoredTo make it even more personal, Paul realized many people would like to honor someone specific in their own families. For example, Paul’s father, Frank, fought in World War 1 in the Army, his brother Frank fought in the Army in WW II, his brother Eugene, in the Navy, his brother, Anthony, in the Air Force, and Paul served in the Army during the Cold War. The legacy of service continues. From Korea and Vietnam to Grenada, Iraq, and Afghanistan, many people have friends, family, and their children who have served their country or are still serving their country today. We must not forget their sacrifice! The Freedom Towel is just one way to show the Vets that you have not forgotten. The Towel can easily be displayed in your office window, in your home or your business to honor those who have given so much. For only $10 more, you can have the picture of your loved one on the Freedom Towel along with his or her rank and the dates served. What a lovely way to honor and pay tribute! And remember that a portion of every Freedom Towel sold goes to support Veterans Groups!