Delaware National Guard airmen return home

    35 are home, 20 more are on the way. The members of the Delaware National Guard spent 45 days or more in Afghanistan in support of Operation Enduring Freedom. But some could return to the war.

    The families of 35 Delaware Air National Guard airmen got an early Christmas present Tuesday when their loved ones returned home from war.

    The members of the 166th Airlift Wing flew back from Bagram Air Field in Afghanistan.

    Twenty more are scheduled to return Thursday.

    • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

    “I’m relieved, I’m happy,” said Tatiana Leamy, moments after seeing her husband, Staff Sgt. Christian Leamy for the first time in more than a month.

    Leamy, who lives in Townsend, was part of the Delaware C-130 aircraft team that delivered equipment, supplies and troops to the combat zone. The same aircraft delivered Leamy, and the other airmen, home to Delaware.

    “It feels great to be home,” Leamy said. “But we all know that there’s a lot going on out there and I’m always thinking about those guys out there that are there a lot longer than us.”

    Leamy says he could return to Afghanistan in 15 months, something his wife doesn’t want to think about.

    “It is what it is,” she said. “If he has to go back I’m going to be quite upset. But it’s his job.”

    But that’s a concern for another day. In a room filled with smiles and tears of joy, Leamy is just glad to be back on American soil. And just in time for the holidays.

    “It’s great to be home, you’ve got family that miss you,” he said. “I don’t have kids but I have dogs and they’re like my kids and I miss them.”

    Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

    Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal