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Several expected attendance figures have been bandied about: First it was 1,000, and later in the day it rose to 4,000.
The rally, which has been organized on Facebook under Hugs for Frank, is supporting Frank Swanson, a long-time Walmart employe who was fired, reportedly for his hugging and approving an advertized price.
Swanson was a longtime employee and cashier with the company and was in the habit of giving his customers hugs.
Since his firing, his customers have united on Facebook and are holding what they say will be a “peaceful” rally to let Walmart know they support Swanson.
The rally has been drawing national attention, and, with the help of Facebook, international notice.
One post from a German reader said: “Glad Walmart could not establish in Germany. Spiegel, a very popular news magazine, has an article on this in their highly frequented news app. I hope that Frank will find an employer with more human values.”
A spokesman for the West Plains Police said they will assist businesses if they are needed and the rally area will be coned off. Asked if they knew what to expect Saturday, they said they didn’t have a clue.