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26929: (news) Chamberlain: Haiti-Kidnappings (fwd)
From: Greg Chamberlain <GregChamberlain@compuserve.com>
ZEELAND, Mich., Dec 8 (AP) -- Looking gaunt and tired, a missionary from
Michigan returned home to a warm welcome after being shot, kidnapped and
held for ransom while visiting Haiti.
Phillip Snyder's friends and relatives greeted his arrival with tears
and cheers Wednesday at Gerald R. Ford International Airport in Grand
"Where are my little ones?" asked Snyder, 48, as several of his nine
children surrounded him and gave him hugs.
Amber Snyder, 38, told The Holland Sentinel that when she had spoken
earlier to her husband by telephone, he asked her to have "a warm truck
waiting for him at the curb. That's how pooped-out he is right now."
Phillip Snyder left for Haiti more than a week ago to bring back a
7-year-old Haitian child for eye surgery in Grand Rapids. On his way to the
U.S. Embassy, Snyder, the child and the child's father were kidnapped and,
in the process, Snyder was shot in the arm and shoulder.
The kidnappers, who were members of criminal gangs, demanded a $300,000
ransom. Snyder and the others were released Friday after a missionary group
paid them a smaller, undisclosed sum.
The boy flew with Snyder to Michigan, where his left eye will be removed
and replaced with a prosthesis. He will stay in the U.S. several months
before returning to Haiti.
Snyder, who has worked in Haiti for more than 30 years, said he planned
to return there someday.