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Red, White and Blue (and You)

Drycleaning owners salute veterans and service personnel

USA — As we gather with family and friends this time of year, we also want to send a salute from fabricare to our service personnel and veterans for all they do, and have done, for us. Here are a few brief stories. Have a fun and safe 4th!

VETERANS WEEK

Amber Kraemer, office manager, Jones Cleaning Centers Inc., Fresno, Calif.: “If you pull up to our plant on any given patriotic holiday you will see dozens of American Flags lining our property, as well a flag pole with an American Flag displayed year-round. We are a veteran-owned company and we salute all veterans and active duty service people and families.

“One way we give back, and say Thank You is by cleaning American Flags for free all year long. Last year, we wanted to do more than clean flags for free, so we extended complimentary dry cleaning, and laundry to all veterans and active duty during the week of Veterans Day.

“Every year we try to do everything we can to give back to the people who have given us so much! Thank you to all veterans and active duty soldiers, we appreciate your service!”

WWII VETERAN

Janet Garman is VP of sales and marketing for Glyndon Lord Baltimore Cleaners: “My husband Mike and his brother John are third generation owners of Glyndon Lord Baltimore Cleaners outside of Baltimore, Md.

“Their dad, Arthur “Otts” Garman, ran the laundry before them and was a WWII veteran.

“Otts was assigned to the United States 33rd Army Division, 130 Infantry Regiment. He took part in the Battle of Luzon, fought January to August, 1945, in the WWII Pacific Theater of Operations by the Allied Forces of the U.S.” His family notes he started out in the Air Force, but ended his career in the Army.

“After that battle, the division was also engaged in amphibious training in preparation for the invasion of Japan. However, the war ended while they were training in the Philippines.

“He was also an active member of our community fire department and because of his patriotism and civic nature, we have always tried to show our appreciation for military personnel and first responders.

“In addition to offering free American Flag cleaning, we give a 15% discount to all military and first responders that use our services.

“Here’s a photo of Otts in WWII. He has since passed, but we try to do what we can to recognize, remember, and honor him. I also included a current photo of Mike on left, their mom Diane Garman, and John on the right.”

FINAL SALUTE UNIFORMS

Doug Johnson is the owner of Peerless Cleaners in Corpus Christi, Texas: “We clean uniforms for veterans’ funerals in the program The Final Salute. We take off all insignias, and clean and press the uniforms. My seamstress removes the insignias and my presser presses the uniforms. When the uniforms are finished and ready, Goodwill is in charge of handling delivery to the funeral home.”

About the Final Salute program, this taken from a recent spring 2019 article titled Uniform donations honor veterans during final salute written by Natalie Contreras for the Corpus Christi, Texas, Caller-Times:

“Johnson, Army veteran and owner of Peerless Cleaners, said he and his staff have worked on about 35 Army, Marine Corps and Coast Guard uniforms during the past six months after ‘Uniforms for the Final Salute’ launched.

“Uniform donations are key to the program, a combined effort between Goodwill, Peerless Cleaners, the Nueces County Veterans Services, Coastal Bend State Veterans Cemetery and Treviño Funeral Home.

“‘Our brothers who will be buried, they need that respect,’ Johnson said. ‘This is just like taking care of our family. It makes me feel good and proud to be able to honor our brothers in this way.’”

Johnson says to American Drycleaner: “My father and I are both veterans and our community is very military- and veteran-supportive. I was asked to be a part of this program and immediately said yes before I knew the full extent of the mission. We have always supported our local military and veterans. This is an extension of our community that is very important to our company and we work everyday to make sure our military looks its best.”

SERVICE UNIFORMS

Beth Shader is the co-owner, with husband Michael, of Milt & Edie’s Drycleaners & Tailoring Center in Burbank, Calif.: “We have year-round programs in place: All American Flags are cleaned free; and all uniformed clothing, such as for EMT, police, and sheriff, are dry cleaned at a 60% discount. We give 60% off on uniforms and then offer 20% off on all personal clothing for uniformed service individuals.”