172 more soldiers are back on U.S. soil in the Coastal Empire. The 179th Military Police Company of Georgia's Army National Guard, escorted by the Bomber Girls and fellow bikers, Savannah-Chatham Metro Police Department and the Chatham County Sheriff's Office, came home Friday morning.
They were not in Kabul, Afghanistan anymore. After a 10 hour bus trip from Mississippi, the soldiers were just miles from the warmest of welcomes.
Greeted by their escorts on Abercorn Extension, the buses shipped out to the National Guard Armory on Eisenhower Driver. The moment they'd waited nine months for was a short march to the Benedictine High School gymnasium away.
As loved ones cheered and screamed their names, spotting her family wasn't so easy for Spc. Eva Golias.
"I was looking for my family, but I'm really short, so I couldn't really see anybody," Golias told WTOC.
The Golias family found Eva. "It feels amazing. It's absolutely wonderful to be back home with my family and my friends," she said.
"It didn't really hit me until I got into the gym, hearing the cheers and seeing my family for the first time in a really long time," SPC Miguel Silva told WTOC.
Like so many of the men and women greeting familiar, and some young faces who have gotten older, Silva reunited with his little girl and his soon to be wife. They'll get married in two weeks.
"It's good to be home," Silva said.
How they celebrate their homecoming depends on who you ask.
"I really kind of just want to have a beer. 22 years old, I think a beer would be nice," Golias said.
"And I'm going to Disneyland."
The Bomber Girls biker club organized the welcome home ceremony and WTOC's own Sonny Dixon was among the bikers escorting the troops.
The 179th MP Company joins the list of units coming home this week, including the 1st Armor Brigade Combat Team Fort Stewart's 3rd ID.