A homecoming celebration for the recently returned members of the 1487th Engineers Battalion is being planned for June 22 in connection with the annual Black Diamond Stampede.
The returnees will be invited to march in the parade scheduled to begin at noon. "We also want to honor Vietnam veterans, and they will also be invited to march," said Robert Potts, who is in charge of special projects for the city.A program in front of the doughboy statue on the grounds of the Price Municipal Building will feature speeches by state officials of the National Guard and the presentation of the company guidon and plaques to the guard members.
The 80 members of the battalion from Price, who left last January for active duty following a program at which there "wasn't a dry eye in the armory," served in Germany in support of NATO training during the Persian Gulf war.
They arrived back in Utah from Fort Lewis, Wash., this week.
Joy Littlefield, mother of six children ranging from a recently graduated high school senior to a 5-year old, said she is grateful that her husband is returning after only four months.
"We were told they would likely be gone from one to three years," she said, "and I dreaded Christmas and other family events without him."
"During his absence I have tried to ignore the bad parts and to not think about how long he might be gone," she said. Littlefield noted that her husband's overseas duty prevented him from attending the high school graduation of Matthew, a son. Matthew is thrilled, however, that his father will be on hand when he leaves for an LDS mission in August.
Gregory, who is 5, did not realize the dangers. Littlefield said Gregory said his father told him he would be back and Gregory was always confident he would be.