Today is a Special Day....

At three o’clock today, a plane will land somewhere in Texas and a family will be reunited after a long separation. A son will have his father back, a daughter will have her Daddy, and a wife will have her beloved husband. This young guy left Texas just one year ago. In his place, a man has returned. Worn, weary, and fundamentally changed to his core by what he has experienced, he arrives home to the arms of his loving family.

Asked to defend this land, he went willingly. He was defending not only his family of four, but his entire American family. In the words of his Commander-in-Chief, he didn’t falter and he didn’t fail… "We have lost over 1,100 soldiers over here since the start of the fight, nearly 900 to enemy action. We lost 3,000 U.S. citizens on September 11th and they were unable to make the choice of whether to be in the fight or not…. Some of the things that I have experienced in the last year renewed my passion to serve."*

Over the past year, the men and women who served with him wondered what the debates back home were really about. Iraq may have been their "mission", but in reality, protecting those back home was their calling. "Planting the US flag here in the Middle East is comparable to putting a lightning rod on your home. Yes we will be struck, that is the point. We are able to fight them here like we can not at home. We do not give them the advantage of hiding in an amongst our citizens, waiting until they have the opportunity to wreak havoc on our society. They have to come fight us over here or else their message of hate will not resonate the strength required to recruit."*

All politics aside….the transition back will be the start of all new challenges and adjustments...

A BIG welcome home from Iraq members of the 1st Cav; as well as to my childrens' Uncle.. LTC Osenbaugh. A deepfelt thanks for the sacrifices that you, Alex, Alana and Aidan made over the last year…you all are our American Heroes.

*Quotes excerpted from an email home November 2004

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