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Michigan Town Won’t Forget Soldier

April 4, 1999

CAPAC, Mich. (AP) _ It’s nearly impossible to go anywhere in this small rural community without being reminded of Army Staff Sgt. Christopher Stone and the other two American soldiers captured near the Yugoslav-Macedonian border.

Yellow ribbons are everywhere. Nearly every tree, lamp post and business is adorned with ribbons. On Saturday evening, students tied ribbons to antennas of vehicles arriving at Capac Community Junior-Senior High School for a candlelight vigil and handed out POW-MIA stickers.

``The town’s support has overwhelmed us,″ Stone’s sister, Deanna, said shortly before the candlelight vigil. ``When we came up here for the first time, it really surprised us.″

A gasoline station in town informed residents about the vigil. The sign in front of the high school reads: ``Our thoughts and prayers are with the hostages.″

Stone, 25, was captured Wednesday along with Staff Sgt. Andrew Ramirez, 24, of Los Angeles, and Spc. Steven M. Gonzales, 21, of Huntsville, Texas.

Dawn Reliford, Stone’s sister who lives in St. Clair County’s Riley Township, said that faith and the support of the community were the main things keeping the family going.

``We appreciate this town very much. We appreciated their prayers the most. It’s God that’s going to bring him home,″ she said.

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