TOWN TURNS OUT TO GREET A P.O.W. (Richard Perricone)

Sgt, Richard Perricone’s hometown gave him a rousing welcome today — something they had been waiting to do for more than six years.

Uniondale Avenue, the main thoroughfare, was lined with American flags and banners were strung across the street proclaiming “Welcome Home, Richard.” And as the fire chief’s red car, trailed by a brown sedan carrying the returning prisoner of war, turned down Jerusalem Avenue, the firehouse and every engine in it let loose with sirens.

The Fire Department said that 8,000 to 10,000 people had lined the sidewalks. In a crush of affection, they pushed and shoved to touch the soldier who had been a prisoner of the Vietcong for nearly six years.

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