HARTSELLE, Ala. (WHNT) – You know, every once in a while, a story comes along that we absolutely, dearly love to do, and this is one of them. The members of the Army’s 152nd Military Police Company came home from Qatar today following a 10-month deployment. They received a well deserved heroes’ welcome when they arrived at Hartselle’s Sparkman Center.
These homecomings are always special events. Emotions run high. But for one soldier and his girlfriend, today’s welcome home ceremony proved to be very special.
“We are here to welcome his Daddy home,” Jamie Mangham said. “We’re excited, very excited. It’s been a long time coming.”
A long time coming for the soldiers as well as for their families who keep the home fires burning.
“My grandson is coming home!”
For Naomi Terry, this is a very special day. What’s grandma gonna say to him? “I have no idea. Probably cry,” Mrs. Terry predicted.
Finally, after 10 long months, the buses pulled in and the members of the 152nd were re-united with their loved ones. After a few minutes, the soldiers were summoned together and marched inside for the official welcome home ceremony. It was during that ceremony we were all treated to a very special surprise. Sgt. Corey Cato had his girlfriend called to the stage, where in front of everyone, he popped the question. Laura Cross didn’t hesitate, she answered, “Yes!”
Now, they are home. Corey and Laura have a wedding to plan. Several have new sons and daughters they will get to know, while some have lost time they will try to make up for. And Grandma Terry is happy, her grandson is home.
The 152nd arrived home to Hartselle because that’s where they departed from. Since they left, their armory in Hartselle has been closed and the unit is now based out of Decatur.
The 152nd is comprised of 173 members. 140 of them were part of this deployment, and there were 117 of them on-hand for today’s ceremony. But the most important number we can share with you is the number who were lost or injured during their mission, and that number is zero.
— Al Whitaker
Watch the proposal. If you have pictures to share from Wednesday’s homecoming celebration, please click the ‘Submit Your Photo’ button below or email them to firstname.lastname@example.org. We’d love to share them with everyone!