FORT HOOD - Greywolf soldiers are back on American soil after spending the past nine months in Kuwait and on missions throughout the Middle East.
Channel 6 Military Reporter Jillian Angeline embedded with the 3rd Armored Brigade Combat Team in Kuwait for the past week. She flew back with the troops.
Soldiers said they were so excited to get back to America for family time and especially food like steak and wings. More than 200 soldiers traveled for more than 20 hours to get to the special reunion.
Specialist Austin Bradley traveled to see the birth of his daughter, Madeline Rose Bradley, but had to go right back to Kuwait. Now, he's ready to be a Daddy after the deployment.
"As soon as I met my child, it changed," he said, adding that a baby changed his outlook on life.
"I'm not a big cryer. My wife says I should be more emotional. I'm not a big cryer, but who knows I might break down."
Bradley said he's looking forward to witnessing Madeline walk and talk for the first time.
"Ladies and gentlemen, welcome to Killeen, Texas," said the flight attendant. The announcement was met with cheers and applause.
The anticipation was building for families and soldiers on Cooper Field when the buses drove away and soldiers appeared. On cue, Bradley and his fellow soldiers were reunited with their loved ones--the first hug, the first kiss.
"She's gotten big," Bradley said, holding his baby girl. "She'll be riding with me now, ain't that right?"
"It's super exciting because we're going to have our family together now, our 2 dogs. And we're gonna live our life finally together," Taylor Bradley, Austin's wife, said.
Specialist William Crenshaw, another member of the Greywolf team, said it was emotional and overwhelming to see the welcome and even the green trees on Fort Hood after living in the desert for most of the year.
His wife Kaitlyn waited so long for the homecoming.
"I was a mess just driving here. I was emotional just driving, but then when I saw him, my heart sank. I was excited. I had butterflies," she said.
"Just play and hopefully she shows me all the new stuff she's learned," Specialist Crenshaw said about spending time with his wife Ava.
Reunions spread around Cooper Field, and although it was chilly, the families' hearts are warmed as their soldier is now home.
Greywolf troops were based in Kuwait but they did 12 training events in places like Egypt, Bahrain and United Arab Emirates. Some were forward deployed to support Operation Inherent Resolve in the fight against ISIS.
© 2018 KCEN-TV