soldier home after action in Panama
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) - A Hoosier infantryman who saw action in Panama
says the invasion force was well prepared but he was a little
Specialist 4 Todd A. Price, 20, said he wasn't afraid when his unit
launched an offensive to capture a Panamanian Defense Forces base
during the, invasion Dec, 20, but he became a little apprehensive
when two of his company's five helicopters were shot down during the
"We were well prepared," said Price as he joined relatives Sunday
in a homecoming celebration ln the living room of his parents'
The machine gunner arrived at Indianapolis -International
Airport Sunday. He joined the Army after graduating from high school
and was sent to Panama 'two years ago after completing basic
Price's unit, the 508th Airborne Infantry, was told to secure Fort
Amador, a Panamanian barracks compound less than a 1/2 mile from PDF
headquarters.. No one in his unit was wounded.
Price was told that his company killed at least two Panamanian
resisters and captured dozens.
"There was no doubt about what our job was," said Price, a 1987
graduate of Warren Central High School.
"We had prepared for
months. We were thoroughly trained for the mission."
the assault on Fort Amador, Price and two other soldiers were pinned
down, briefly, by a sniper as they approached a building:
U.S. troops returned heavy machine-gun and mortar fire and the
Panamanian fighters soon stopped shooting and fled into the canal."
Price said. More than 100 "weapons, including handguns, rifles and
machine guns, were recovered from Fort Amador.
After the initial assault, Price's company was ordered to conduct
house-to-house searches in Panama City ."The Panamanian people
supported our efforts," Price said. "People in downtown Panama City
would clap when we went by until sniper fire would make everyone hit
Price's wife, Tiffany' A, Price, 20, has been living off-base
in Panama with her husband and their two children since June 1988.
She broke down in tears when her husband returned to their
Panama residence on Christmas Eve, four days after the invasion.
"I'm ecstatic," said Tiffany Price, who also graduated from Warren
Central in 1987. "I'm glad to be in the States. I've already eaten
an Arby's roast beef sandwich, and it was pure heaven."
[The Tribune, Seymour, IN
15 Jan 1990, Mon • Page 8]