MEMPHIS, TN (abc24.com) - After a year in Kuwait, a group of Tennessee National Guardsmen are home from their mission to help coordinate the withdrawal of American troops from Iraq.
Twenty guardsmen came home on January 4, 2012. They're part of the 300 troops deployed last January with the National Guard's sustainment brigade. While a few were able to come home for R & R during the deployment, many of the guardsmen saw wives, children and parents for the first time in a year.
"Daddy!" Ashley and Haley Floyd shouted when they saw their father. “That was a moment I've been waiting for about 12 months,” Spc. Scott Floyd said.
Floyd is proof you can miss out on plenty in a year. “I left, my daughters were about a foot tall, now they're about my height,” he said.
“It's always nice to know that what you left behind is still here waiting on you,” Sgt. David Justice said. For Justice, it was his son Gabriel’s first words and his son Matthew’s first steps.
The National Guard hasn't been involved in a mission of this scope since WWII.
“It was an honor, we made history, we were some of the last people in Iraq, even though we were in Kuwait and Iraq, it was an honor to do it,” Floyd said.
All 300 guardsmen deployed last year are now back in the U.S. 75 of those deployed are from West Tennessee.