Thursday, September 20, 2001

Embroidery company sending patriot shirts

By Ray Schaefer
Enquirer Contributor

        ERLANGER — Nancy Fullerton showed her patriotism when it wasn't so popular and now she's shipping it out of town.

        Ms. Fullerton is president and co-owner of Lighthouse Embroidery on Circleport Drive, and she is sharing her love of America with the cities where the terrorist attacks occurred.

[photo] Nancy Fullerton, president of Lighthouse Embroidery in Erlanger, packs patriotic shirts for shipment.
(Patrick Reddy photo)
| ZOOM |
        On Tuesday, her company sent to New York and Washington some 4,000 T-shirts and sweat shirts reading “America: United We Stand” and embroidered with an American flag.

        Lighthouse has carried its “Americana” line of 15 designs for seven years. This year's most popular design is the one that was sent to New York and Washington.

        That doesn't surprise Mary Ann Byrd, who works as a trimmer at the factory.

        “Everybody's trying to show love for America,” said Ms. Byrd, 61, of Florence.

        After one look at Ms. Fullerton's home decor in Anderson Township, it's easy to understand her business' product line.

        “I have a bedroom full of flags,” said Ms. Fullerton, 49. “I was patriotic before it was cool. I always tear up at the national anthem and "God Bless America.'”

        Last week's attack is not the first time Lighthouse has sent shirts to those in need. Ms. Fullerton said her company sent clothes after the San Francisco earthquake in 1989 and to disasters in Nicaragua and Honduras two years ago.

        It was Ms. Fullerton's idea to send the shirts to New York and Washington. She said it came to her while watching CNN last weekend.

        “We didn't have to rush to make a lot of designs,” she said.

        Ms. Fullerton called the American Red Cross first. From there, her idea went to the United Way and finally to The Salvation Army, which is handing out the shirts.

        Some 5,000 shirts in white and gray were also made for sale at the factory, with 25 percent of the profit going to firefighters and police departments.


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