How Army Unit Coins the Company Came About
We got into the challenge coin business in a very roundabout way. After 9-11 my wife and I were very distraught. Because of our ages we could no longer serve and that simply added to the helpless feelings of not being able to assist our country in her time of need. Then one day Heather found a way to help. We contacted “Operation AC” and adopted a soldier. The soldier we adopted was a 1LT who was serving in Kuwait in a Maintenance Company armoring vehicles. While he was deployed we sent numerous care packages. He was promoted to CPT and when his deployment was up he was sent to Captain’s school at Ft. Lee Virginia, which is only 3 hours from our home. As soon as we could, we arranged for him to spend the weekend with us. It was during this visit that he “introduced” me to his Challenge Coin collection. He was extremely proud of these coins and had a story to tell for each coin, who gave it to him, why he received it, and where he received it. With a 20 year background in promotional advertising I immediately knew that this was a part of the promotional advertising market I had never considered. However, my curiosity was peaked enough to take a closer look.
Once the Challenge Coin seed was planted we began to research the market. We interviewed manufacturers of coins, studied the companies that sold coins, determined how we would enter the market and who would make the coins for us, did a cost/profit analysis and designed a website which would be our primary method of contact with our potential customers. Unit Coins was launched Memorial Day 2006
I knew this would be the business for my wife and I the moment I realized that our customers would, for the most part, be active duty military and first responders. The product we would be selling to them would be used to award or recognize them for a task well done. It gave us the feeling that, in some small way, we were supporting our country.
Frank’s Years of Service and description of job
Date of entry 5 September 1958
Date of Discharge 16 June 1961
I enlisted in the US Army 5 September 1958 in Philadelphia PA and was sent to Ft Dix NJ for basic and advanced training. My advanced training was for a 2nd Echelon Wheeled vehicle mechanic. The Army, in its infinite wisdom, assigned me to a tank outfit in Munich Germany and changed my MOS to track vehicle mechanic. I had never seen a tank, let alone knew how they ran. I was very happy to discover that the company had two ¼ tons, two 2 ½ tons and three trailers all of which had wheels and none of the other mechanics in the motor pool wanted anything to do with them. They also had an APC which was powered by two Chevy six cylinder engines. This was assigned to me. I spent two years, two months in the motor pool based in Munich Germany caring for my wheeled vehicles.