The story of American icon Radio Flyer began when a teenage Antonio Pasin migrated from Italy to the United States, dreaming of a better life. Upon arriving in Chicago, Pasin, a skilled craftsman, looked for work as a cabinet-maker but eventually took a job as a water boy for a sewer digging crew. Several jobs later, he had saved enough money to buy some used woodworking equipment and rent a small workshop in 1917. Pasin crafted wagons by night and sold them during the day, and by 1923, his business had grown to include many employees.
The Liberty Coaster Company’s first wagon was called the No. 4 Liberty Coaster, and Pasin sold the handcrafted wood wagon directly to stores himself. Though times became tough during the 1920s, the Liberty Coaster Company moved onward, taking its inspiration from the automotive industry. With an eye for innovation, Pasin adopted metal stamping technology to manufacture steel wagons and implemented mass production techniques, earning him the nickname “Little Ford.” He named his first steel wagon Radio Flyer, and in 1930, the Liberty Coaster Company changed its name to Radio Steel & Manufacturing.
By the 1950s, Radio Flyer had become a household name across America. Over the following decades, the company introduced several new products, including official Walt Disney wagons, a line of garden carts, the Scat Racer, the Baby Walker, the Ski Sled, and the bestselling Radio Flyer Town & Country. Always combining classic quality with modern innovation, Radio Flyer brought joy to millions of children throughout the nation.
In the mid-1990s, Pasin’s grandchildren Robert and Paul took over the company. Today, Radio Flyer remains committed to the tradition of building “safe, quality toys that spark imagination and inspire active play.” Pasin was inducted into the Toy Industry Hall of Fame in 2003 for his significant contribution to the toy industry.