SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) - Seven lucky families will get to see their loved ones this Christmas.
We caught up with soldiers from New York all the way to the Philippines.
Out of 60 soldiers and letters written to Savannah/Hilton Head International Airport, only seven were chosen.
“To our service members, we owe an enormous debt of gratitude every holiday. We have the pleasure of celebrating because of your daily sacrifice and valor. We sincerely thank you for all you do and wish you all a happy holiday.”
These soldiers will either come home to Savannah for the holidays or they will get to leave Savannah and go to the place they call home.
"It's way more of an honor than I could have ever expected."
Specialist Magri told us this was truly a blessing for him because he will actually get to attend his daughter’s doctors appointment in New York after she was born with a cleft palate
“When you’re away from your family, it makes you realize so much more of what they mean to you and what actually drives you to push harder and harder,” he said.
From New York to San Diego and back to Savannah, the McDowells haven’t seen their son since tragedy struck their family in 2016. Two years later, Tyjuan McDowell will be home to open Christmas gifts and hug his mom and dad a little tighter.
“We love you. We miss you and we are counting down until you get here,” his mother, Julvonnia McDowell, told him.
The single mom was entered into this competition by her coworkers. She says this is the greatest gift she and her babies could have.
“It’s so awesome. I just got the phone call like two days ago,” Toni Herrod said.
Not only will these men and women travel home to their families, Specialist Kevin Morante will make an even further trip to be with his family this year - to the Philippines.
“I’m absolutely excited. I’m mixed emotions of I don’t know exactly what to feel. I don’t know what to say to them when I get back. Of course ‘I miss you,’ but that’s not enough for me to tell them how much I miss them," Morante said.
Let’s all remember, as these men and women serve, their families serve too.