JOINT BASE ELMENDORF-RICHARDSON (KTUU) - Wednesday night, another group of soldiers finally returned to Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson after months overseas, serving in Afghanistan.
In addition to about 130 or so 4th Brigade Combat Team (Airborne), 25th Infantry Div. soldiers coming back to friends and family, the commander and command sergeant major were on the flight in, specifically for the uncasing of the colors - a traditional ceremony held by U.S. Army groups upon deployment or return from deployment.
However, while the quantity of soldiers returning was smaller than some of the last arrival groups, the quality of reunions was the same, with people waiting for their loved ones clearly excited and growing more and more visibly ready for those reunions as time went on.
One in particular - who already has two kids, is pregnant, and working on her doctorate - has a message:
"Just, thank you for all the hard work you do, and the families that work to support," said Darla Roundtree, wife of arriving Sgt. First Class Reuben Roundtree. "Take good care of yourselves, and just enjoy your time."
As for what's next, most of the group that arrived Wednesday will be leaving Alaska soon for new assignments. On Saturday, another 350 or so 4-25 soldiers are expected to return to JBER, and after that, it’s primarily individuals and pairs of soldiers coming back at a time.