Airmen return home from Afghanistan - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Airmen return home from Afghanistan

By Jade Bulecza - bio | email

VALDOSTA, GA (WALB) -  There are a lot of happy military families in Valdosta Tuesday night after 170-airmen from Moody Air Force Base returned home safely.

The members of the 23rd Maintenance Group and 75th Fighter Squadron spent six months in Afghanistan.

The air force is a family affair for one couple. We talked to one returning airman whose husband just replaced her overseas.

Loved ones jump into the arms of airman as they got off the bus. Being away is challenging for children and parents especially when both parents are active duty.

"It's just good to be home and good to be with my kids," said Angela Yeoman.

Angela Yeoman just got back from Afghanistan, she had a chance to see her husband Carl as he relieved her.

"This year we've seen each other for two weeks a little bit everyday for two weeks in Afghanistan," said Yeoman.

Before landing at Moody Air Force Base, families were waiting anxiously. Yeoman's son eight year old Dustin told us what he'd do when he saw his mom.

 "Run and hug her," said Dustin Yeoman.

Grandma Lois Yeoman has been watching Dustin and one year old Linzey grow.

"When they're on skype she tries to give her kisses," she said.

"She hasn't seen her for six months," said Leslie Padgett, Yeoman's dad. "She missed one of his birthdays but she'll make it up."

As Airmen reunite with their families, some of the airmen are seeing their children for the very first time.

Senior Airman Todd Padgett was saw his baby for the first time. She's now four months old. While in Kandahar, Afghanistan, these airmen equipped maintained and flew A-10s.

"They were providing the airplanes to support our troops on the ground in Afghanistan as they fought taliban and Al Quaida forces there," said Col. Neal Robinson, the 23rd maintenance group commander.

Leaving the ones you care about behind is difficult but when the airmen return home there's no place they'd rather be than with family and friends.

Moody is the home of the air force's legendary "Flying Tigers" and they have more than 1,300 airmen deployed around the world supporting contingency operations.


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