Monday, March 3, 2008

Marshall is HOME!!

Marshall is finally back in the good U.S. of A. after being in Iraq since August! We're lucky in the fact that his tour was short compared to a lot of other soldiers, but we already know that his stay at home is short lived. He will be going back for his 2nd tour in August. :(

When he was in customs in Iraq he phoned to say he was about to get on the plane and kind of hinted if there was going to be anyone greeting him upon his arrival. I told him unfortunately we just didn't have the money for it, especially with his other brother's high school graduation coming up. You could hear the disappointment in his voice, but he understood. Little did he know that we had a surprise for him!

That Thursday my husband flew to meet his plane. He was arriving an hour earlier than Marshall's so that he could meet him at his gate. But, we were in for the surprise! We had been waiting for a phone call from Marshall when they arrived the day before in Baltimore, but we had not heard from him. As my husband was waiting at the gate, I received a phone call from my daughter-in-law saying that Marshall's troop had been delayed in Qatar and their arrival was pushed back a couple of days! Oh NO!! My husband waited around at the airport just in case Marshall's troop made it on the flight, but he did not. So, we scurried around and found him a hotel.

Early, early in the morning Tom received a phone call from Marshall from Ireland! He asked if he was going to work and Tom told him that he was in a hotel waiting for him to get there!! Marshall sounded surprised and happy that someone was there to see him come in! After a few more delays through Chicago and a co-pilot not making it for their connecting flight. Marshall's flight was due to arrive at midnight! At that time Tom was the only one in the airport to greet him and his troop. Everyone else in the airport had gone home. No TSA agents, no gate agents and only one guy in baggage claim.

I called Tom at about 11:55pm to let him know that it looked like Marshall's flight had arrived on time and that he should be walking through at any moment. Tom then said, there was a hubbub going on at the airport! Turns out that the Patriot Guard showed up to welcome the soldiers home! Tom said it was really great! They had flags and cameras and it was a great sight at midnight for Marshall and his guys to have that kind of welcome.

Marshall and his dad made it back to his house and they stayed up until 5am talking! It's been really great for both of them!