Families anxiously wait for 395th to return home
Photo: Video by nbc26.com
APPLETON, WI--A special homecoming Thursday in Appleton. Nearly one-hundred soldiers in the 395th ordinance company are on their way back from Afghanistan. The unit was deployed last July. They were responsible for issuing and distributing ammunition to other units in the area.
Families are anxious to welcome them home to Appleton. The unit arrives at the Outgamie County Airport around 12:30 PM.
After nearly one year of seeing her husband through a computer screen, Deedra Hallmark finally got the call she's been waiting for.
"It was the automated message from the 395th drill center tell me when and where I can pick up my soldier!" said Deedra.
Sergeant David Hallmark spent the last year at a base in Afghanistan. Deedra says its been one of the toughest years of her life. She stays at home and takes care of their son Elliott who has cerebral palsy. "
Being a single parent is really hard. I'm glad iIm going to be done with that," said Deedra.
But Deedra hasn't only missed david's presence, she's missed the emotional connection too.
"They can't always open up and talk about things even though you might want them to and that's really hard," said Deedra.
Times were tough when a soldier in David's unit died last year.
"It was hard, I went to the funeral... I cried," said Deedra.
Now, the anxiety of having her husband overseas is gone and deedra is focused on the big homecoming.
"I've just kind of been trying to pass the time, cleaning the house and watching the clock hoping the hours go by quicker!" said Deedra.
She's looking forward to Elliott having a father figure...
"Being able to give him a hug..And get a hug from him!" said Deedra.
And hopefully, having their soldier back home for good.
This was sergeant David Hallmark's second tour of duty. His wife says she wouldn't have made it this far without the support of her family and friends.