Nevada's 593rd Returns Home


RENO, NV - Imagine standing in an area full of mothers, daughters, fathers, sisters, brothers, wives, husbands and kids waiting for their loved ones to come home. That was the scene at Reno Tahoe Airport Friday afternoon as the Nevada Army Guard's 593rd came home from nearly a one year tour of Afghanistan.

“Now check," Emerson Burke prompts her Grandma again to look at her watch

"Check again?" says Grandma Brenda.

Emerson and her Grandma are counting down the seconds before dad comes home from Afghanistan.

They are not alone.

More than 100 people waited in baggage claim, some for more than an hour to greet the men and women from The Nevada Army Guard's 593rd.

Emerson's mom Whittney says its been a long eleven months.

“Today is extremely overwhelming but in the best way possible,” says Whittney Burke.

Whittney says her younger daughter Lily Jo was only six months old when her husband left.

These days she's walking on her own.

Other wives have brought their newborns who their husbands have never held

There were plenty of signs, and picture taking.

Veterans who may or may not have had a similar welcome in their day were on hand to greet their brethren.

For kids like Emerson the wait gets longer as the moment arrive

For Whittney the anticipation is almost too much to bear.

"One minute, one minute," the airport announcer says letting the crowd know how much loner

You can almost hear heart beats quicken...and then.

“Go get him,” says Grandma Brenda to Emerson as her dad walks through the sliding glass doors.

After Emerson jumps into his arms, and he gets a kiss from his wife holding Lily Jo, Derek Burke is able to talk.

“Very emotional, a lot of emotions all at once, good to be home,” he says.

The reunions played out dozens of times at Reno Tahoe Airport Friday afternoon.

Guardsmen tell us what happens next is get a good meal, get some sleep, or play with their kids.

The 593rd Transportation Company received more than one homecoming on Friday.

The unit of approximately 120 soldiers let members off in Las Vegas and Elko earlier in the day.


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