America celebrates its 247th birthday and independence from Great Britain this July 4. U.S. auto glass shops are taking a brief break next week to celebrate the occasion. We asked some shop owners what the Fouth of July means for them:
Raul Plascencia, owner of Direct Quality Auto Glass in San Bernardino, Calif.
“The United States is all I know,” Plascencia shares. “We immigrated to the United States when I was two. I am currently 35. This is the country that’s given everything to us—the opportunity to grow. I started doing auto glass with my pops when I was seven. When you come from another area—you have the freedom here you don’t have in other places. I’m a proud American.”
Plascencia is giving his team July 3 and 4 off, which will surely be appreciated.
“We have a tradition where we support the University of Redlands,” Plascencia shares. “We always give small donations for VIP seating for [a firework show] for senior citizens. We purchase seats so that they can go watch up close.”
Bradley Aydelott, owner of Glass Monkey Chip Repair in Murfreesboro, Tenn.
“My favorite part of America is that we are a melting pot for all cultures,” says Aydelott, who’s taking July 4 off. “It was intentional—let’s come to a place, share ideas and cultures and see what comes of it.”
Aydelott grew up in West Tennessee within a mile of the Tennessee River. He remembers July 4 traditions well.
“It was always a big family fish fry,” he recalls. “Apart from the food and the swimming in the creek, we went to the fireworks tent at an interstate exit. I saw how far I could make my [allowance] stretch. It was my first experience managing cash flow. That started when I was nine.”
Michael Nichols, owner/installer at Innovation Auto Glass in Bent Mountain, Va.
“I have a baby girl who’s only two years-old,” says Nichols, who will put down his urethane cartridges on July 4. “I like to spend these days with her and my wife. My wife owns an IV hydration business and will also be off. It will be a family day. We might go to the pool or hike in the mountains.”
Nichols normally grills burgers and hot dogs, but he’s pulling out all the stops this year.
“I got a new smoker,” he says. “We’re doing baby back ribs and a couple of whole chickens.”
Jorge Sandoval, owner/technician at KD Auto Glass in Moreno Valley, Calif.
“I am taking a quick trip to San Diego with my two kids,” says Sandoval, whose business will be closed for the holiday. “They have fireworks everywhere.”
Sandoval immigrated to the United States from Guadalajara, Mexico, when he was 19.
“The best part of America is the opportunities,” he says. “Everyone has a chance to make it. I saw it, and now I’m living it.”
Omar Landin, owner/technician at Klear Fix Auto Glass in Orange, Calif.
“I want to have a good time and relax,” says Landin, who plans to take time off on July 4. “I will probably garden. I’ve got a couple of plants I’m growing at the house. I want to continue to make them grow and add more. I also want to spend time with my girl and little puppies.”
Born in California, Landin remembers enjoying specific July 4 dishes growing up. “We used to eat Carne Asada and have a nice gathering—family moments,” he says.
Landin says liberty is the best part of America.
“Having the chance to have an enterprise,” he says. “It’s harder to have it in other countries. There are so many hurdles you have to jump through. It’s the freedom to do whatever you want to do.”