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Commentary, sarcasm and snide remarks from a Florida resident of over thirty years. Being a glutton for punishment is a requirement for residency here. Who am I? I've been called a moonbat by Michelle Malkin, a Right Wing Nut by Daily Kos, and middle of the road by Florida blog State of Sunshine. Tell me what you think.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Florida the rules are different here Chapter XXXIII

Here's a story from Cape Coral. Salvation Army dropoffs that go boom. Maybe someone thought Salvation Army was a different type of Army.

Open Post- Jo's Cafe, Bullwinkle Blog,

Thrift stores are popular because you can find most anything inside, but one doesn't expect to come across a grenade and several rounds of ammunition.

That's exactly what one employee at the new Salvation Army store in Cape Coral found Wednesday morning in a brown paper bag left in a drop box usually reserved for gently used clothes, furniture and kitchen items.

"An employee found it and we weren't taking any chances," said Tim McCormick, facilities manager for the store on Del Prado Boulevard. "We called 911 right away."

Authorities had initially thought the WWII-era grenade might have been live, so they wasted no time in contacting the Southwest Florida Regional Bomb Squad, based in Lee, Collier and Charlotte counties.

"We sent in the experts," said David Vieceli, battalion chief of operations for the fire department.

It's rare for the department to call in the bomb squad, said Vieceli, estimating it happens about two or three times a year.

"The grenade was old and had a hole drilled through the bottom," said Dyan Zedeker, spokesperson for the Cape Coral Police Department. "However, the pin was still attached, so we didn't want to take any chances."

Emergency responders evacuated about 25 or 30 people including employees of The Salvation Army — which had its grand opening last week — and the neighboring Coast-to-Coast Carpet Outlets, The Next Generation Thrift Store and Latin Flavor restaurant.

No customers were in the Salvation Army store when the call was placed about 11:30 a.m., he said.

At noon, the parking lot was sectioned off with caution tape and one lane of southbound Del Prado Boulevard was blocked off for about a half-mile stretch.

"I just thought it was probably a hoax," said Peter Kearney, vice president of Coast-to-Coast. "We weren't really concerned at first."

He realized it was not a joke when he and a handful of employees were evacuated about a half-hour later.

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