AUSTIN (KXAN) - If anyone knows how to throw a homecoming celebration -- it's the Williams family.
Royann Williams hung onto the large white banner that was displayed above her garage when her husband, Maj. Michael Williams, came home from his third tour of duty in Iraq in 2009.
Their oldest son Cayden, 6, read the message aloud: "Michael we are so proud of our brave hero."
"Just to pull up into the driveway with all of our family and friends and see the banner, he just couldn't believe it," said Royann.
Her husband has been gone since February on his fourth deployment in Iraq. This week Royann learned Michael will be coming home early for Christmas, so she ordered a new banner from BuildASign.com .
Just like the first one, she got it for free.
The Austin company has donated nearly 200,000 banners to military family and friends since 2008. They came up with the idea after customers ordering welcome home signs for troops kept asking about a military discount.
"We thought, it seems like we can do a little bit better," said Andy Knopp, director of corporate development for BuildASign.com.
Originally, the sign company decided to giveaway 10,000 signs for troops and thought it would take a couple of years to do it.
"It really spread quickly on the Internet," said Knopp. "A lot of military spouses and organizations got a hold of it and ran with it and we ended up getting 10,000 orders in about three weeks."
They had to buy a bigger printer to keep up with the demand at their main printing facility in North Austin. Currently, they fill about 200 orders a day just for friends and family of returning military.
Customers only have to cover shipping, and can customize the banners while ordering online by adding their own message, pictures and backgrounds.
The company is well aware business will likely pick up in the next couple months after President Barack Obama announced all U.S. troops will be home for the holidays.
"We're ready for it, we love seeing the orders," said Knopp.
BuildASign.com will be printing Maj. Williams' banner soon with one more name on it this time. His 1-year-old daughter, Carlyn, will be part of the celebration for the first time.
"I'm indebted to them and want to tell them thank you," said Royann. "It really means a lot to everyone involved."
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