Apr 9, 2010 6:50 PM by Veronica White

Support the 256th with Red Shirt Fridays

With Acadiana's men and women of the 256th Infantry Brigade Combat Team off to Iraq, some businesses are showing their support with "Red Shirt Fridays."

One participating business is Teche Federal Bank on the corner of Johnston St. & Jefferson St. in Lafayette.

The employees all show support for the 2 family members of employees who are in the 256th-- Dondi Vedalier's daughter and Josetta Smith's sister.

Every Friday since January they and their coworkers have worn t-shirts to support the women, and will continue until the troops come home.

"On the back of my shirt it has her name... it meant a lot to her, she said it helps her each day to get through it," says Dondi.

Volunteers for the Louisiana National Guard started Red Shirt Fridays to show support and help pay for shipping items to the soldiers.

Ever since the 256th went to Camp Shelby a few months ago, more Acadiana businesses and locals have taken interest.

The effort is not just to support the troops, though, because as Josetta says, it is a way to support herself in a time of worry.

"It helps me to cope with it, it feels like I actually have a part of her with me now; it helps ease the pain a little bit too," she says.

To get a t-shirt, go to one of the following locations:
-Teche Federal Bank on on the corner of Johnston St. and Jefferson St.
-Hardy's Cleaner's (any location)
-Champagne's in Erath

You can also get t-shirts or get information on how your business can participate by calling 298-9520 or 837-6833 or emailing



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