Marine Air Control Squadron Home from Afghanistan

James Gass holds his new baby.
James Gass holds his new baby.

A group of Beaufort Marines with Marine Air Control Squadron Two, Detachment A, are back home with their families tonight after a long deployment to Afghanistan. It was the moment Marines and their families have been waiting for now for more than six months.

"It's great, it's been a long time coming, I'll tell you that," said Tia Bauer.

"Oh my God, it feels like eternity since I've seen him," said Jennifer Gass. "It's wonderful."

Although these Marines were honored to support Operation Enduring Freedom, being away for so long was not easy.

"Just the separation and being in the environment we were in, it was tough," said Marine Shawn Finch.

While the Marines were away, they missed out on a lot of special occasions. In fact, it was the first time for one of them, James Gass, to hold his new baby.

"This is it right here," he said. "Seeing my beautiful wife and seeing our precious girl for the first time. It's all I need. I've got all I need now."

So after anticipating this moment for six weeks now, what does this new dad think of his little girl? "I'm beyond words, I can't even describe it. She's adorable, she's perfect, just like her mama. It's one of the most emotional things I've ever been through. It was very hard, but it's over now."

While at the Khondahar air base in Afghanistan, the squadron provided long-range air traffic control support for Operation Enduring Freedom.

Reported by: Jaime Dailey,