"I can't wait to see his face and then it will be all better."
WAUSAU (WAOW)--Tears of joy and heartfelt hugs filled Wausau West's gymnasium Tuesday night as the 428th Engineer Company returned to central Wisconsin. For many families, it was the first time seeing their loved ones since deployment over a year ago.
"I can't wait to see his face and then it will be all better," said Susie Davidson, whose son left for Afghanistan last year.
She said the hardest part of his deployment was dealing with constant uncertainty. "Always on edge, you know, you're afraid to answer the phone or the door. You always wonder is he ok?"
As the company entered the gym, it took everything in Sergeant Jonathon Olson's power not to walk straight into the arms of his family. "I had to go back and get in line. When I saw them, it was pretty special," he said.
Combat Engineer Dalton Hiley said a two-day delay in the company's homecoming wasn't well received.
"(I was) pretty angry. We should have only been there for three or four days but it turned out to be 12," said Hiley.
The 428th took on a dangerous mission in Afghanistan, patrolling thousands of miles and finding over 100 IEDs.
Olson said thoughts of his family helped push him through. And being able to hold his twins for the first time since they were just four and a half pounds old makes it all worth while.
"Now I get to spend some time with my twins and my kids I miss so much," he said.
Happy to be home, and in the arms of loved ones once again.