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Excerpt taken from the article "These wipes clean grime off the grunts" written by Dick Youngblood, a columnist for the Star Tribune.

"Hooah" is a soldier's exclamation -- a battle cry, a gung-ho response to an order or a collective whoop of troop approval.

"Hoo-Ahhs" -- with the emphasis on the Ahhs -- is the response that Jack Coonan imagined hard-working troops would sound as they encountered the brainstorm that he has turned into a growing St. Paul business.

Coonan, 43, is founder and president of Hoo-Ahhs LLC, manufacturer of a wet-wipe made of a sturdy, cloth-like material that growing numbers of soldiers are using to remove dirt, insect repellent and camouflage after a hard day in the field.

Coonan was a supply sergeant and full-time staffer with the 147th Army Aviation Brigade of the Minnesota National Guard when he came up with the idea for the Hoo-Ahhs Field Towel in 2002 during the Guard's annual summer training stint at Camp Ripley.

"There are no showers in the field, and I saw a lot of soldiers using baby wipes to clean up at the end of the day," Coonan said. "But they [baby wipes] didn't work too well.

"They were scented to the point of nausea, they were way too small and they'd fall apart on your beard stubble," he said.

Besides, the pink-and-yellow packaging wasn't what you'd call ... well ... soldierly.

The tough, unscented product that Coonan came up with late in 2002 has found a ready market among soldiers in the field in Iraq, Afghanistan and elsewhere around the world. In fact, Hoo-Ahhs towels are included in the so-called "care packages" that the USO gives to soldiers headed overseas.

For the full article click here.

© 2005 Star Tribune. All rights reserved.

Excerpt taken from the article "The mother lode of cool: The latest gear you don't want to leave home without" written by Phillip Thompson a Times staff writer for AIR FORCE TIMES.

Baby wipes, be gone
There you are, a proud warrior in the world's best military, crusted over with the grime of your latest campaign. Without a shower for miles, you clean up by reaching into your ruck and pulling out a box of ... baby wipes.

We get it. We've been there.

Besides making you feel a little silly, it takes about half a box of the flimsy things -- they were, after all, made for a baby's bottom -- to scrub the gunk and dirt and camo paint off your hide.

Hoo-ahhs Field Towels, developed by Army vet Jack Coonan, are for grown-ups. He developed an "industrial-strength" wet wipe towel that won't tear apart when it hits your whiskers and will remove the camo paint off your mug. Two of the 7-by-10-inch towels, he said, will bathe you head to toe (OK, you Marines may need more than two).



Excerpt taken from the article "Americans See Profit in Terror Protection" written by Joshua Chaffin in Washington for The Financial Times, republished by Yahoo! News.

...But for all the high-tech wizardry, some of the most useful items may have been the simplest. Jack Coonan's stroke of genius is the Hoo-Ahhs® field towel. The name is a play on the motto enthusiastically uttered by marching soldiers.

Mr. Coonan recalled the nightmare he endured as a soldier hauling water in the field in order to bathe. Often, he said, he and his buddies resorted to wet-wipe towels.

So Mr. Coonan created an industrial-strength wet-wipe capable of removing camouflage greasepaint and not fraying on stubbled beards. With just two Hoo-Ahhs® field towels, disaster-scene workers can take the equivalent of a full shower, Mr. Coonan claimed. Hoo-Ahhs® can also be made into slings and bandages. "It's basically a giant baby-butt wipe," he said. A 20-pack costs $3.99.

© Copyright The Financial Times Ltd 2004. & Copyright © 2004 Yahoo! Inc. All rights reserved

For the full article click here.