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CNN BREAKING NEWS

'Last Hurrah' for British Tourists Visiting NYC

Aired August 15, 2003 - 08:06   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

DARYN KAGAN, CNN ANCHOR: We've been talking this morning, not that this is just all about a story here in the states, but this has the attention of the entire world today. It's very interesting about what is taking place here in the U.S. and also into Canada.
We have with us now a family who is from England -- the Willison- Parry family. They've lived here for the last two years. This weekend was supposed to be the last big hurrah and it ended here in New York City.

KERRY WILLISON-PARRY, BRITISH TOURIST IN NEW YORK CITY: That's right. We've lived in North Carolina and Summit, New Jersey, and we thought we'd come to New York for a last weekend and have a great relaxing time. We saw a container of equipment of furniture leave yesterday, so we came to New York for a good time, and we spent the night on the streets.

KAGAN: So, when they say, "You just have the clothes on your back," you literally just have the clothes on your back.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: We are literally homeless at this moment in time. All we have is what we're wearing, and our luggage is somewhere in a hotel, we hope.

KAGAN: And dad is Derek -- Derek Willison-Parry. So, what happened last night?

DEREK WILLISON-PARRY, BRITISH TOURIST IN NEW YORK CITY: Well, we were just about to check in. We were just about to take the key off of our friend behind reception, and then all of the nights went out. They fed us and watered us, but when the darkness became around about 7:00 and all the batteries failed in the hotel, it was obviously going to be pitch black in there. So, then they advised us to leave, so we found our little soft pavement and slept the night. And the kids actually slept for 10 hours.

KAGAN: You slept for 10 hours?

ROSEANNE WILLISON-PARRY, BRITISH TOURIST IN NEW YORK CITY: Yes.

KAGAN: And is this kind of how you were?

R. WILLISON-PARRY: Yes, I was kind of wrapped in this and I had a pillow just to lie my head on.

KAGAN: And to me that looks like a giant table cloth.

R. WILLISON-PARRY: Yes. And one of the people we met gave it to us from inside the hotel.

KAGAN: And what did you think about that, Theo?

THEO WILLISON-PARRY, BRITISH TOURIST IN NEW YORK CITY: I was trying to get to sleep on the pavement, and it was -- my head was banging against the pavement, and I thought it was really bad.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: He slept, though. He slept.

KAGAN: All in all the family kept a good attitude.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: Yes, and it was nice and calm, and we were surrounded with lots of nice people from all over the states. And, yes, it was just nice and calm and a pleasant evening, really. I'm just looking forward to a shower, though.

KAGAN: A shower and a trip back to the U.K.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: Yes, yes.

KAGAN: Well, good luck with all of that. You've kept the smiles on your face. I appreciate you sharing your story and your tablecloth, Roseanne.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: Thank you.

KAGAN: Appreciate it. The Willison-Parry family making their way back to the U.K. Good luck getting back.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: Thank you.

BILL HEMMER, CNN ANCHOR: You're not going to forget this night in the city, are you?

K. WILLISON-PARRY: We're not. No, we're not.

HEMMER: Good luck. Thanks for being guests with us today, too.

K. WILLISON-PARRY: Thank you.

TO ORDER A VIDEO OF THIS TRANSCRIPT, PLEASE CALL 800-CNN-NEWS OR USE OUR SECURE ONLINE ORDER FORM LOCATED AT www.fdch.com.




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