Families gather to welcome home loved ones - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Families gather to welcome home loved ones

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CORDELE, GA (WALB) -

Families gathered along the streets of Cordele to welcome home their loved ones who spent the last three weeks going through intensive training at Ft. Stewart. They're proud of the soldiers' service.  

"It feels great, it's been kind of crazy without him, lonely but it's good to have him home," said Brandy Finn, girlfriend of soldier.  

"I feel relieved and I'm very glad he's back safe, I know he's tired but overall just relieved," said Abbi Hosley, mother of soldier.  

Capt Matt Smith says the training prepared the troops for ground combat.  

"We're an infantry rifle company our mission is to destroy the enemy by means of fire and maneuver; we are the guys on the ground that actually engage in ground combat," said Capt. Matt Smith, Commander, National Guard.  

Martravious Mann says the 80 soldiers learned a lot.  

"We do a lot of shooting, we do a lot of squad operations, setting up Orp's clearing building," said Martravious Mann, soldier, National Guard.  

Capt. Smith says the troops he trained are ready if they were needed for active duty.  

"Very proud, very proud, it's a tremendous honor and privilege to be a commander of a unit such as this, it is truly the best company in the 28th brigade combat team, and these are amazing citizen soldiers who sacrifice a lot for our state and nation," said Smith.    

The last time the unit based in Cordele deployed was in 2009 and 2010 when the troops were sent to Afghanistan.

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