Third Infantry Division soldiers with the Second Brigade Combat Team were told yesterday that they'll be moving out of Iraq to base camps in Kuwait later this week. Families in Hinesville have been waiting nearly a year for this news. WTOC has learned that the Army is developing a plan for year-round rotation of the troops in order to maintain a force of 145,000 in the region.
After months of delays, Army wife Susan Conroy can hardly believe it. "Jason called me yesterday morning and told me, and I was just ecstatic," she said.
In September, her husband, Capt. Jason Conroy, left with the Third ID, Second Brigade for what was supposed to be a six-month deployment. Now, ten months later, the family finally has encouraging news. While they're not home yet, the Second Brigade is moving out of harm's way.
"I'm a little bit guarded, but I think it's actually going to happen," said Susan, adding that she won't tell her children till she knows for sure. "They've been heartbroken too many times," she said. "I'll just wait till I know when he's coming home, then I'll tell them."
Christina Waterhouse's husband, Sgt. First Class Brett Waterhouse, is in the same company, and she too has endured the ups and downs of wondering when he'll be home. She's not saying anything to her daughters, either.
"This last time I felt for sure that this was actually going to be it," she said. "Unfortunately I told our children that they were coming home and then had to tell them that they weren't, so that was probably one of the hardest things I've ever had to do."
But she is encouraged that after ten long months, the Second Brigade is finally closer to home.
"Hopefully their mission is complete, that they can let someone else come in who's a little more fresh and not quite as battle weary," Christina said.
The company has been told that the 82nd Airborne will replace them as they are moved on to Kuwait.