Paradise found: Iconic Key West welcome sign back home

The sign, which reads 'Welcome to Key West' on one side and 'Come Back Soon' on the other, returned to the island Thursday via ferry.

KEY WEST, Fla. (AP) – Paradise has been found. The sign welcoming Key West visitors to “Paradise U.S.A.” that went missing after Hurricane Irma hit Florida is back home.

Thursday an unidentified couple dropped off the sign at a dock in Fort Myers, about 300 miles (480 kilometers) away.

The dock is used by the Key West Ferry Express, which provides regular service to the island. The ferry company agreed to take it back home where it was greeted Thursday by Key West police officers.

Residents say they last saw the “Welcome to Key West” sign on the ground after it was presumably knocked down by Irma on Sept. 10.

The sign at the island’s entrance off U.S. 1 features a painted sunset. It was an $8,000 gift from the Rotary Club.

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