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Community offers a hero's welcome

Sara McManamy-Johnson sjohnson@lebanondemocrat.com • Dec 15, 2015 at 1:55 PM

The fire truck’s siren wailed as cheers rose in the Lebanon neighborhood.

Lebanon’s Bobby Harris came home Friday to a throng of well-wishers after nearly two weeks at Vanderbilt University Medical Center.

Bobby, 6, was diagnosed April 6 with medulla blastoma, an aggressive brain cancer.

Doctors removed the tumor, and he will soon begin intensive chemotherapy treatments.

Friends, neighbors, the Chick-fil-A cow and a few of Lebanon’s finest lined the normally quiet street to welcome home the Castle Heights kindergartner.

“We love Bobby, and we wanted him to know how much we love him,” said Rachel Hutchings, a friend and neighbor of the Harris family and organizer of the welcome.

Lebanon police cars flanked the street’s entrance, blue lights flashing; homemade signs shared messages of love and hope; green prayer balloons whipped in the wind.

“We wanted to just let them have a visual of the love and support,” said Hutchings. “We are saddened that they’re having to endure this trial, but we want them to know we’re with them.”

John Harris, Bobby’s father, said there’s already been an outpouring of community support for the family.

“It’s just amazing that they could’ve put something together like this and have such a turnout,” said Harris.

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