Hundreds of Marines return after nine month deployment
JACKSONVILLE, Onslow County —
"They're not far, I know that much," said Trish Neville. It's something she's been waiting to say for the last nine months.
Her husband is one of 300 marines on the Task Force South West mission in Helmand, Province, Afghanistan. This afternoon, they returned home to Camp Lejune.
"It's almost like the first date, just the butterflies and seeing someone you haven't seen in so long," said Neville.
Although her husband has been deployed before, this was the first deployment the couple faced with their youngest child. They have three, ages 2, 10 and 12, all were just as nervous, if not more, than Trish.
"Having him here, being able to hold him and touch him. A lot of nights you just dream and then they just fade off and you want to stay asleep because that's the closest you are," said Neville.
According to General Roger Turner, lead commander, this mission was the largest since the Marine Corps' combat role in Afghanistan in late 2014.
"Very successful in reversing the momentum of the Taliban, really changing the game of the Province and also we brought everyone back, so everyone's back in one piece," said Tuner.
For the Neville family, and many other families, having their dads and husbands home, was a feeling like no other. Something that Trish's oldest daughter could only describe as "speechless."