National Guard Unit Returns
Camp Blanding--Army medical technicians are returning home to tears of joy after being gone for at least a year in the Middle East. The Florida National Guard has planned one of the biggest welcome home parties at Camp Blanding.
“He's been gone for a year and yesterday was his 22nd birthday so we're glad he's home,” said Cindy Calloway.
Along with dozens of families, Calloway is waiting for her hero, her son KC. The Lawtey resident says she's happy this day has finally arrived.
“I'm glad the whole group is back, 'cause I know being an FRG, that everybody is missed a lot and they're all coming back safe”, said Calloway.
Around 70 members of the Florida Army National Guard's 256th combat medics have been gone for more than a year, working two shifts a day in Iraq.
Many of these families have come from all over, anxiously waiting to see their loved ones' faces. And as the buses pull in, the feelings can't be contained. Finally getting to hug her son, Cindy Calloway can't hold back her tears. The return is emotional for both of them.
“It's great, nice and relieving that I can go and get out of the uniform, relax and enjoy my time with my family,” said KC Calloway.
It is a sentiment that is shared amongst the rest of the health care specialists. KC says living in Iraq has been a life changing experience for them all.
“It was interesting; military health care works a little different that civilian health care. It's nice to go and be able to help soldiers and be the one they're looking to for help when they're in need,” Calloway said.
Although this welcome back party is over, the Florida National Guard is already preparing for another group to come back in September.
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