Today 121 soldiers, sailors, and one marine came home to the DFW area. I asked if they looked happy to be greeted, and Vince said they did. Happy, surprised, even embarrassed. Being the big baby that I am, I couldn't even listen to him tell me about it without tearing up. Vince said he kept it together, but really had a hard time when he saw one soldier meet his baby daughter for the first time. A little blond, round cheeked three month old. The thing that bothered Vince was that he noticed this new father had a small knapsack, which meant he would be returning to the middle East after only two weeks R&R. I would have been bawling. Vince said the families line up first, the veterans form a line up against the wall and get to shake the hand of each service man/woman who comes off the plane. Then groups of children and everyone else get to greet them. Vince also said there were the "Greeting Grannies", in their hand knitted patriotic sweaters, who give each one a hug, and are there everyday we have service people coming home.
Then Vince told me after everyone debarked, his group went to Gate 14. Gate 14 is where our servicemen are waiting for flights to go back. I asked him how they seemed, and he said they seemed anxious, almost eager. Like they couldn't wait to get back. They have a sense of duty, and have brothers waiting for their return, they have a job to do. He said he knew how they felt.
Welcome Home and Thank You!