Differences on War Put Aside for Happy Homecoming - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

01/04/06

Differences on War Put Aside for Happy Homecoming

Sgt. Maguire surrounded by family. Sgt. Maguire surrounded by family.

There were many joyful reunions today at Fort Stewart, where about 150 Third Infantry Division soldiers returned from the war in Iraq after a year-long deployment. WTOC was there as the families anxiously waited for members of the 3-15 Infantry.

It's always great to see the waving flags and hear families cheer as their soldiers march across the field. And though not everybody--not even all military families--agree on the war itself, politics couldn't get in the way of a happy homecoming.

The anticipation built as families counted the minutes till their soldiers came home. "Exciting, nervous," is how Cindela Criscione described waiting for her husband. "Oh my God, I'm so excited."

The Maguires drove down from New York to meet their soldier, Kevin. "When we were driving down the coast, my husband and I, we stopped at the outlets and I started hugging the soldiers I saw," mom Nancy told us.

Grandma Rita had a shorter trip since she recently moved to Florida. "I would have came up anyhow," she said. "If I had to crawl. I'd be up here."

But this family doesn't always sing the same tune. "I definitely support the troops," said Nancy. "President Bush, and all your fallen people here."

But Rita Maguire doesn't agree with the war in Iraq. "I'm just not for it, I'm sorry," she sad. "It's a shame. My husband was in World War III...so I seen enough and I think something has to be done with these wars. I don't think our fellows should be going over there."

Regardless of what they may feel about the war itself, there were no politics at Cottrell Field today. Banners hung up to welcom troops summed up the general feeling. Everybody was just happy to have their soldiers home.

Back on American soil for the first time in a year, Sgt. Kevin Maguire was in the arms of a family who loves him. When we asked his grandmother how it felt having him back, she laughed, "Oh great, I'll do an Irish jig."

And that's one thing all the Maguires can agree on.

This is the second time Sgt. Maguire's been to Iraq and come home safely. And if he ever had to go back, there'd be no stopping his family from attending his next homecoming as well.

Reported by: Charles Gray, cgray@wtoc.com

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