Emotional homecoming for members of Oklahoma's 45th

Saturday, August 7th 2004, 3:35 pm
By: News On 6

Hundreds of families gathered at Union High School in Tulsa to welcome their loved ones home from Afghanistan.

News on 6 reporter Patrina Adger was there and says the group that came in Saturday is with the first battalion, 279th Infantry, they are part of the 45th Brigade.

This group left in late January and for seven months provided security for Task Force bases in Afghanistan. Some of the soldiers told the News on 6 they knew this would be a big event, but they weren't expecting this kind of welcome.

Union's gymnasium sounded like a rock concert as the soldiers filed in to the sounds and screams of their families. As if seven months wasn't long enough, the group was delayed in Wichita for an hour.

The News on 6 caught up with the Wachendorf family who we profiled in January shortly before their son Kyle left. Patty Wachtendorf got very emotional once when spotted her son. She says it's been an emotional roller coaster for her but she's thankful Kyle is home. “My husband did say. He asked me. We've been married fro 29 years Monday morning. What do you want for our anniversary? I've got it right her. My kid's coming home and that's all I want, so this is the best anniversary present I've ever had."

There were many emotional homecomings as some of the family members waited outside for hours just to see their loved one as they got off the bus.