Recognize the Hero in Your Life

With Veteran’s Day on November 11, I wanted to recognize the hero in my life, my father. William Tirabasso was born in the United States but his family went back to Italy where he was raised. To this day my dad speaks with a thick Italian accent so people think he was born in Italy.


In 1949 he returned to the U.S. He was here for a year and being a U.S. citizen, he was drafted to serve in the Korean War. He attended basic training in Alabama at Camp Rocker. When he was first drafted he hardly spoke English. When his sergeant called out drills he did not understand the commands. The sergeant thought he was being a wise guy and made him walk around the fields in full uniform as punishment.

My father explained to the sergeant that he did not understand much English so he could not carry out the commands. They soon became close friends. William was transferred to Fort Bragg. Because he spoke Italian he became part of the Military Intelligence as a translator. He went to Louisiana and Texas for maneuvers where he wrote letters in Italian translated into English for military information.

On February 16, 1951 he was inducted into the Army and was sent to Tripoli, Libya, Africa, Algiers and Italy as an interpreter. William was on the list for combat twice but he never went because he was part of the military intelligence. The army wanted him to stay but he had no desire to.

On January 28, 1957 he was discharged from the army. He went to the Chic School of Design with the allowance he received from the army. He studied and went on to design clothing in New York City.

My father served his country, the United States, Italian accent and all, by being part of the military intelligence. I want to thank him and all the veterans who have and are serving our country.


Remember that special hero in your life who has served our country. Are you looking for a way to recognize the military achievements of a hero in your life? One idea is to frame their medals, ribbons, flags, and other items from their time served into a spectacular piece. Framing uniforms and other personal belongings highlight the soldier’s time in the military. Acknowledge their contribution by showcasing these valuable items.

This is also a wonderful idea for Memorial Day, Father’s Day, Mother’s Day or Christmas. There are many design possibilities. When gathering the items, keep in mind that there are guidelines on how military items should be displayed.


I asked LaWahna Search of the Cottage Framery in Goshen for guidelines on how to honor the Veteran in your life. LaWahna sent in the following tips:

United States Flag

When not on a staff or mast, the United States flag should be hung flat. No objects or emblems should be placed on or attached to it. Whether it is hung vertically or horizontally, the stars should be at the upper left. Also, when the flag is folded, the red and white stripes should not be visible.

Colors of the Military

If you’d like to follow tradition, keep in mind that there is a specific color associated with each branch of the military. These are light blue for the infantry, medium blue for the Navy and Air Force, and red for the Marines and artillery.

If you’ve wanted to display these items and not sure how you’d like them presented, LaWahna will work with you to create something that you’ll love to display in your home or give as gift. Bring in the specifics medals or items for her to arrange to create the design you like. Whether you have one large piece to display, numerous smaller items, she will design an attractive, unified piece for you.

Keep in mind that preservation elements should be incorporated into the package. Therefore, you can ensure that these special items can be displayed for years to come and garner the respect that they deserve.

LaWahna has been working with Vincent Maniscalco of Middletown’s Park Manor Rehabilitation and Health Center on a special recognition frame. It will showcase the residents who are veterans and include their name, branch, rank, and years of service, and will be unveiled at a tribute ceremony in their honor this Friday. Ms. Search says, “It has been an honor to create this piece for Park Manor. I’m sure many future generations will enjoy the history memorialized here.”

Cottage Framery and LaWahna call be reached at 845-294-7107