For the privacy of our military families, we do not include their full names in our blog posts. Keith had contacted me a few months prior to his return from Iraq about getting photos for the homecoming. Keith has spent 13.5 years active duty in the Air Force and has been with the Rhode Island Air National Guard for 1 year. His current position is Instructor Pilot. The return of this current tour marked Keith’s 6th deployment: 4 to Operation Iraqi Freedom, 1 to Operation Enduring Freedom, 1 to Operation Inherent Resolve; and the most recent deployment was his shortest at 2.5 months. In total he has spent over 30 months deployed! Hence the reason for wanting this homecoming documented! He said his children were the perfect age to get a good reaction out of and his wife, Brook, was currently pregnant with their third child.
After coordinating the logistics, I met Brook and her children along with Keith’s parents and brother and sister in law at Quonset Point. There were about 8-10 other families there waiting for their loved ones. What an awesome event to capture though. There were drinks and snacks for the families waiting. The kids were making posters that said “I Love Daddy” on them with colorful pom-pom’s. Lot’s of excitement in the air. There was a clock that displayed the countdown of the plane’s arrival time.
The pilot called when they were 45 minutes out and Keith’s kids got super excited because they heard their Daddy over the speaker! Keith said that luckily this tour was only 2 months but for young kids that’s forever! Brook said they have a good system down with phone calls and Skype dates.
They let us out on the pavement about 10 minutes prior to the plans arrival. All the families clustered together with their signage. Everyone was so excited when they saw the plane fly in. Keith’s daughter ran out to hug her Daddy it was so cute and she gave him the hugest bear hug possible. I even got teary eyed and I had just met this family!
Other fun facts: Keith has logged over 4,000 flight hours in total, 200+ combat missions and 1,100+ combat flight hours!
Thank you for your service Keith!
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