POCATELLO — More National Guardsmen of the 116th Cavalry Brigade Combat Team were greeted home by family and friends as they arrived at the Pocatello Airport Tuesday after a year-long deployment.
For Staff. Sgt. Donald "D.J." Robertson of Blackfoot, returning home from his second deployment means being able to spend time with his family and finally getting to know his nine-month-old daughter.
Robertson's mother, Donna McBride, said he was able to see his daughter born via video chat on Skype and said when he came home for two weeks in April he could barely put her down.
"Now we're just thrilled to death that he is finally coming home," McBride said.
Robertson has five children—three girls and two boys. The oldest, Trevor, will be 11 next month.
"It's great to see my family and my friends," Robertson said.
Robertson's wife CaroLyn said she found out last night that her husband was coming home and said she is just happy and excited to have him home.
"She's really proud of the job he's done," CaroLyn's mother Carol Bodily said.
Sgt. 1st Class Leonardo Luis, of Blackfoot also returned from his second deployment Tuesday and was greeted by his wife, DaleMarie, and his children and grandchildren. He was also greeted by a black miniature schnauzer puppy named Mia—something Luis had said he wanted when he got home.
"We love him," DaleMarie said. "We're excited."
Luis operated vehicle maintenance crews in Tikrit, then Balad, Iraq. He said it was a busy job keeping vehicles on the road.
"I'm just glad to be home. It went by pretty quick," Luis said.
"We're just proud," his daughter Katie said. "We're glad to have him finally home."
There are still members of the 116th Cavalry Brigade yet to return home to Idaho. All soldiers should return by the end of September. Those returning include about 2,700 Citizen Soldiers from Idaho, Montana and Oregon, with about 1,500 from Idaho, 600 from Montana and 600 from Oregon.