Deployed soldiers getting ready to come home - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Deployed soldiers getting ready to come home

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by Jolene Toves

Guam - Some families on Guam won't just be celebrating the New Year this year they will have a little more to celebrate.

It was earlier this year that six hundred of Guam's sons and daughters left home in support of military operations in Afghanistan and after nine long months of deployment soldiers and their families will be reunited. "It's just great news that we know they are coming home but right now they are still in country and so we still encourage them to remain vigilant until they leave," said Major Josephine Blas.

As you can see here soldiers proudly display the Guam flag as they get ready to transition out of the desert and back to the sandy beaches of our island. "The good news is they are already leaving their fobs or their forward operating bases cause as you know they were located all over the country little by little they are moving from their fobs and going to what we call a staging area and basically wait for transport out of country," she said.

Major Blas says the soldiers are anxiously waiting to board a plane to leave country but when exactly they will depart is not known because unlike commercial airlines military flights schedules are not available. But before they are safely home soldier must go through demobilization. "When they left Guam they went to Camp Shelby and they did a lot of preparation to go in country now when they get back to Camp Shelby they are going to do what we call demobilization operations their going to get their medical checkups and administrative processing to ensure they are ready to come home," she said.

Once it is ensured that the soldiers are medically sound Major Blas says they will start returning home. But this does not mean that all 600 soldiers will be returning at once instead Major Blas says soldiers will be coming home in chalks, adding, "As they are ready to go as their relief arrives they are going to be leaving in chalks and as availability they are going to be boarding the planes and heading to camp Shelby as soon as they touch ground our folks are going to be processing them and as soon as we are ready we are going to be sending them home but we are not going to be bringing them all home at the same time."

According to Major Blas they are hoping to have all deployed soldiers home by mid-January and while island residents celebrate the New Year.

For families of deployed soldiers the end is finally near as the National Guard is getting ready to welcome back some soldiers just in time to ring in the New Year.

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