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SOLDIER IS EXPECTED TO ATTEND BENEFIT

Army Infantry Spc. John Pirinelli is expected to be on hand for a hometown fund-raiser in his honor Friday at Sanborn Post, American Legion, 6525 Ward Road.

The local soldier was critically wounded from enemy small-arms fire July 28 when his company was ambushed near Tikrit, Iraq. He was immediately flown to Germany for surgery.

His injuries were critical and destroyed one of his kidneys, perforated his intestines and left a tremendous exit wound in his abdomen. The 23-year-old soldier and his wife, Katrin, are expecting their first child, a son, any day.

Family members said he has made a steady recovery at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, D.C., where he has been moved to an outpatient residence due to rapid recovery. His recovery is a factor in his attendance, organizers noted.

Money raised from the benefit will be used to help with the medical-related expenses. Baskets for the auction are still being accepted.

The benefit will run from 4 p.m. to midnight, and tickets are $20.

Included in the event will be live bands, ticket and silent auctions, door prizes and raffles. Food and beverages also will be available.

Anyone interested in tickets or donations should call 298-1160 or 471-4677.

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