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More on the Cranston, R.I. "Patriot Rally" from rally last night!
The Providence Journal ^ | 03/25/03

Posted on 03/25/2003 10:17:28 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow

Hundreds rally to show support

"Our troops need to see this," says Maj. Gen. Reginald Centracchio, commander of the Rhode Island National Guard.

03/25/2003

BY BARBARA POLICHETTI Journal Staff Writer

CRANSTON -- When members of Auburn American Legion Post 20, working with the leaders of the American Legion Department of Rhode Island, decided to hold a rally in support of U.S. troops yesterday they had modest expectations.

"We just want to show the troops and their families that there are people who care," said Dennis Ratcliffe, post commander, as he watched people gather at the war memorial at the juncture of Park and Pontiac Avenues as daylight faded. "We hope to get at least 100 people."

They got that and a lot more.

"We're here to send the simple message that we are with you every step of the way," said Sen. Jack Reed, who was joined by Representatives James Langevin and Patrick Kennedy. "I am very proud of my fellow Cranston citizens today. "We will support [our troops] without question for the duration."

The crowd was also addressed by Cranston Mayor Stephen P. Laffey and Maj. Gen. Reginald Centracchio, adjutant general of Rhode Island and commander of the Rhode Island National Guard.

"Our troops need to see this," said Centracchio, who received the most rousing round of applause from the crowd. "This is what America is all about. . . God bless each of you, God bless the United States and God bless our troops."

Before the rally began at about 5:30 p.m., many people took the time to write messages on a giant sheet of paper that had been draped over several folding tables. Centracchio said that the goodwill missives will be delivered later this week to soldiers at Fort Dix, N.J.

Rally participants ranged in age from World War II veterans to high school students and, in addition to affixing small yellow ribbons to their lapels, weren't afraid to wear their hearts on their sleeves.

"I support our soldiers and I support my president," said Camille Bruno who stayed to the rear of the crowd with Toby, her small Yorkshire terrier who was attired in red, white and blue -- from his belted blanket to the small visor shielding his eyes.

Many people had family members in the military, and they traveled to Cranston from parts of Rhode Island and Massachusetts yesterday saying that they were glad to have a counterpart to some of the antiwar protests that took place across the country over the weekend.

"Support our troops now -- Save your protests for the voting booth," read the large sign carried by Rob Snyder of Ashaway, who said he showed up because his 27-year-old brother, Christopher, is a sergeant in the Army. "Right now he's in Fort Campbell [Ky.]," said Snyder, who waved a large American flag that he had removed from the front of his house. "It's only a matter of days or weeks before he is shipped out."

John Horton, 24, is a first lieutenant with an Army tank division that is en route to the Middle East from Germany. His parents, grandfather and aunt and uncle traveled from North Dighton, Mass., to join the rally and show support for the West Point graduate and his fellow soldiers.

His mother, Paula, held up a T-shirt inscribed with the words, "My son is a tanker," as she and others urged passing motorists to honk their horns as a show of support.

There was no lack of enthusiasm from evening commuters who created an unceasing symphony of blaring horns as they passed through the busy intersection.

The mayor read a proclamation that declared yesterday an official day of "recognition and support of Operation Iraqi Freedom."

One of the most poignant messages was a silent one -- part of a prayer that Ratcliffe had found on the Internet and copied onto a piece of cardboard that was taped to the stone base that holds the cannon at the Park Avenue war memorial.

In read, in part, "Lord, hold our troops in your loving hands. Protect them as they protect us."


TOPICS: Activism/Chapters; US: Rhode Island
KEYWORDS: march23reports; patriot; rally; rhodeisland
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Me, my wife, and our 3 year old daughter went to this rally last night...it was a remarkable showing, considering our small size, and the fact that we were a Blue Gore state (for SOME reason).
1 posted on 03/25/2003 10:17:28 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow
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To: ItsOurTimeNow; wellesleyrepublican; veronica; buccaneer81; reciprocity; oyez; HairOfTheDog; ...
*bump*

It may only take 50 minutes to drive the length of our entire state, but we got spirit! LOL
2 posted on 03/25/2003 10:20:40 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Lastly, the article doesn't mention it, but the turnout was a little over 400 strong!
3 posted on 03/25/2003 10:22:26 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
"a Blue Gore state (for SOME reason)"

You don't by any chance have a large semi-legal immigrant population, do you?

4 posted on 03/25/2003 10:23:02 AM PST by Redbob
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Wow neat! - Thanks for going and being counted! - Did you snap any pics of the event?
5 posted on 03/25/2003 10:23:38 AM PST by HairOfTheDog (May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Good old Cranston! My Mother and Father side are both from there. God Bless those wonderful Italians! They love America!
6 posted on 03/25/2003 10:24:56 AM PST by Coachm
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Bravo!
7 posted on 03/25/2003 10:25:50 AM PST by Corin Stormhands (I Support Our Troops and Our President)
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To: Redbob
You don't by any chance have a large semi-legal immigrant population, do you?

Why yes we do!

It's called "Central Falls" (ri humor...lol)

8 posted on 03/25/2003 10:26:32 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: HairOfTheDog
I'll have some pictures up, but not until next week, unfortunately.

My digital camera pooped out on me last weekend, so I had to use standard 35mm film (How barbaric!). Additionally, my scanner is still at Lexmark being repaired...which, according to them, will take approximately 20-30 years. lol
9 posted on 03/25/2003 10:28:40 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Little Rhodie, big Patriotism, good to see it! Planville, MA native here. Good to see these rallies picking up, c'mon and join ours in Medford Square this Saturday.
10 posted on 03/25/2003 10:28:56 AM PST by guinnessboy
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Technical difficulties indeed!

Any pics at the newspaper? - I couldn't get to the link without bein' registered.
11 posted on 03/25/2003 10:31:28 AM PST by HairOfTheDog (May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow

12 posted on 03/25/2003 10:35:49 AM PST by 2Jedismom (ĎAnd those who have not swords can still die upon them.')
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
ALRIGHT!!!

EAGLES UP TO A HHD!!!!

13 posted on 03/25/2003 10:38:16 AM PST by RMDupree (HHD: Pray for our President, our troops and the innocent civilians!)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
...Sen. Jack Reed, who was joined by Representatives James Langevin and Patrick Kennedy...

Damned America hating commies, the three of them. Smart enough to see which way the wind blows, though, unlike the cheese eating puke, Chafee.
14 posted on 03/25/2003 10:40:31 AM PST by the gillman@blacklagoon.com (They have been warned.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
"Patches" Kennedy was there? Do he understand what it was all about, or did someone have to explain that the U.S. and Iraq are at war?
15 posted on 03/25/2003 10:41:01 AM PST by mountaineer
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
WTG IOTN! Where's your pics?
16 posted on 03/25/2003 10:41:49 AM PST by ksen (HHD)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
Great turnout!! Glad y'all were able to be there!
17 posted on 03/25/2003 10:43:03 AM PST by SuziQ (I)
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To: HairOfTheDog
Here's a video link:

http://www.wpri.com/artman/publish/newwpri/video/topstory.wmv

Here's the paper's picture:

18 posted on 03/25/2003 10:44:19 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: the gillman@blacklagoon.com; mountaineer
I couldn't believe it myself...there may be hope yet for Kennedy. Although I'm sure the only reason they were there was for the face time.

Chaffee was actually speaking at the Brown(shirts) University "peace" protest with all the other Bush-hating malcontents.

His wannabe Republican arse will most surely be voted out next election.
19 posted on 03/25/2003 10:47:20 AM PST by ItsOurTimeNow (Peace and quiet...and good, tilled earth.)
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To: ItsOurTimeNow
The paper's picture is a great one! - Imagine that kid looking at that old newspaper when he grows up! - You know his folks will keep it!
20 posted on 03/25/2003 10:48:07 AM PST by HairOfTheDog (May it be a light for you in dark places, when all other lights go out.)
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